CHARLOTTE, N.C. — It took firefighters about 30 minutes to get the flames under control after an early morning fire broke out at Theatre Charlotte in the Cherry Neighborhood near Elizabeth.
Most of the theater’s equipment was destroyed or badly damaged, including sound and light equipment, wires and cabling. There was also significant damage to the auditorium and smoke damage throughout the building.
Theatre Charlotte has been in the building on Queens Road since the 1940s. The organization is a volunteer-based theater company that continues to bring entertainment to the community.
“We are grateful that nobody was injured. We are grateful for first responders who saved what they could. And we are grateful for this theatre community,” Theatre Charlotte said in a Facebook post.
This year, of course has brought much of that to a halt, cutting revenue, though the organization has pushed through by filming performances people can stream.
The associate artistic director told Channel 9′s Elsa Gillis that even with the fire, there’s a bright side.
“We didn’t haven’t people in the building. We didn’t have productions scheduled,” Chris Timmons said. “So for something like this to happen it sucks. There’s no other way to say it but it’s giving us an opportunity to be able to address these issues and not disrupt programming in our space.”
Timmons said the community support has been great. The theater will be updating its website as they learn more and keeping track of those offering goods and services. They are also accepting financial contributions here.
Fire investigators said it was an electrical fire involving the HVAC system.