The Charleston Gaillard Center has partnered with National Shows 2 (NS2), a Nashville-based concert promotion company that will assume exclusive responsibility for booking all forms of popular music, comedy programming and more.
Programming of classical concerts, dance productions, musical theater and educational presentations will remain the purview of the Gaillard Center.
The Gaillard hopes the new arrangement will strengthen and diversify its concert offerings.
Formed in 2010, NS2 promotes all genres of entertainment, including full-length tours and individual concerts nationwide. Recently, the company presented Diana Krall at the Gaillard Center, a concert that sold out.
NS2 has a similar relationship with the Charleston Music Hall; Carolina Theatre of Durham in Durham, N.C.; CMA Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, Tenn.; and the Sandler Center for the Performing Arts in Virginia Beach, Va.
“This partnership with NS2 will only boost the Gaillard Center’s strong start in presenting contemporary and comedic talent," said Gaillard President and CEO Stephen Bedard in a statement.
Charles Carmody, director of the Music Hall, said he welcomed the news.
"It is a great thing for CMH to have NS2 working with the Gaillard," he said. "The Music Hall and the Gaillard should not be competing (for) the same shows, as the Gaillard (1,800 seats) is twice the capacity of the Music Hall. NS2 will be able to better grow artists in the market and stop booking agents from raising booking fees by having the Gaillard and Music Hall place ... competing offers on artists. I am very excited about what this opportunity means for the Gaillard, the Music Hall, and the city. It will mean more national acts and, hopefully, diverse acts being booked in Charleston."
NS2 President Darin Lashinsky said the arrangement will help make the Charleston market more viable for entertainers with a national profile.
“Entering into this partnership with the state-of-the art Gaillard Center affords NS2 the opportunity to continue to bring artists to a community that has been an integral part of our success," Lashinsky said. "We look forward to growing Charleston’s vibrant entertainment scene, and increasing awareness throughout the music industry that this is not a market to be overlooked.”
Upcoming shows presented by NS2 include Bruce Hornsby and The Noisemakers and The Wood Brothers (June 27) and Bill Burr (Sept. 16). Tickets are available at gaillardcenter.org. Other concerts will be added on a rolling basis.
All of the Gaillard Center's operations and marketing will continue to be managed locally by existing staff.