Brand new Cultural Arts Center Charleston officially debuts with show that highlights some of the best of Broadway
by Lorne Chambers | Editor
When the Cultural Arts Center Charleston (formerly Charleston Performing Arts Center) moved from James Island to its new space in the Citadel Mall back in April, co-founder and creative director Kirk Pfeiffer promised to bring Broadway to Charleston. He’s doing just that this month, when the West Ashley’s newest theatre center stages its debut performance with Broadway Rewind.
Directed by Pfeiffer, Broadway Rewind is a dazzling musical journey of Broadway treasures spanning more than 120 years, starting from present day and “rewinding” to the birth of Broadway. Pfeiffer has curated more than 50 unforgettable Broadway moments, capturing the essence of and celebrating American musical theatre.
Broadway Rewind will star several professional New York City artists and designers in addition to the 25-plus member cast featuring adults and youth from the Charleston community, including the new Cultural Arts Center Charleston Company Ensemble.
Ahead of it’s debut, West Of Free Press caught up with Pfeiffer and asked him a few questions. Below is some of that conversation:
WEST OF FREE PRESS: How would you describe Broadway Rewind?
Kirk Pfeiffer: Broadway Rewind premiers July 6 at the new Cultural Arts Center located inside the Citadel Mall. We are ecstatic to present this lavish and unforgettable music revue! You’ll be blown away by the level of talent, from local children, to NYC Guest Artists! Our incredible cast of 23 singers, dancers and actors will dazzle you with back-to-back Broadway hits from the early years to today, spanning over 120 years and including over 60 songs! Highlights include Grease, A Chorus Line, Oklahoma, West Side Story, Anything Goes, Music Man, Rent, Evita, 42nd Street, Matilda and sooo many more!
WOFP: Who wrote, directs, and stars in it?
KP: This show, as most all of our shows, is written, directed, choreographed, and costumed by yours truly. Broadway Rewind has a cast of 23! Five local children between the ages of 8 to 12, CACC’s Company Ensemble of 13 local adults and teens, and five NYC Guest Artists: Brian Kamps, Stephanie Bacastow, Brittany Silver and Aaron McMillan. We also have a guest artist scenic designer from NYC, Owen Nuss. Music direction by Thomas Gerber. Last, but certainly not least, I never do a show without my partner in crime and co-director, Scott Pfeiffer, who quite often writes the book for our shows and designs lighting, in addition to serving as the executive director for the organization.
WOFP: Why did you decide for this to be your inaugural production in the new space and under the Cultural Arts Center name?
KP: Broadway Rewind has broad appeal. One of the most challenging things when selecting a season is determining what will appeal to our audiences, while anticipating a growth in our audiences’ demographic.
WOFP: What are some of the highlights of the performance?
KP: Being a Broadway veteran myself, I tend to be quite proud of the fact that our recently established Company Ensemble, which includes 13 local adult and teen males and females are executing some of Broadway’s most recognized and challenging dance numbers such as “Anything Goes,” “We’re In The Money,” “One,” “Dance At the Gym,” and “Jelicle Cats.” With that being said, other standout moments in the show would have to be selections from Phantom of the Opera, Oklahoma, and a very unique presentation of “Season of Love” from Rent.
WOFP: Is the space physically ready to go or will you be working on it up to the last minute?
KP: (laughing) Lord no! We are a nonprofit with very little funding. In fact, over the past five years we have built and created every show, costume, set piece, wig, even stage, ourselves; however, we are passionately optimistic that we will attract new interested donors and corporate sponsors to help in our efforts. We will most definitely be working on hanging curtains, lights, and probably sewing up to the last call before going on! Any last minute volunteers are always welcome!
Broadway Rewind will be performed July 6-14 at Cultural Arts Center Charleston, located at 2070 Sam Rittenberg Blvd., Suite A-112 in the Citadel Mall. For tickets or more information, call (843) 991-5582 or visit www.cartscc.com.