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Carolina Theatre of Durham, Inc., the non-profit that operates the historic downtown Durham performing arts venue, and Nashville-based concert promotion company National Shows 2 (NS2) have entered into an agreement that opens the door for the two organizations to co-promote at least 60 national touring acts at the historic theatre each year.
Carolina Theatre Interim President and CEO Dan Berman lauded the new booking agreement.
“This partnership allows the theatre to leverage the prestige and booking power of NS2, one of the country’s most active live event promoters.” Berman said, “It enables us to increase the number and variety of offerings at the Carolina at the same time that we dramatically reduce the economic risk of producing such a busy calendar of national touring artists.”
This new agreement, which was reviewed and approved by the theater’s board of directors, will help the Carolina Theatre remain at the forefront of downtown Durham’s renaissance. In 2015, it was estimated that the historic venue’s economic impact to the city topped $15 million.
Formed in 2010, NS2 promotes all genres of entertainment, including full-length tours and one-off concerts nationwide. The rising national concert promotion company has already successfully presented artists such as Jason Isbell, Aretha Franklin, Alice in Chains and Eric Church in Durham and Raleigh.
NS2 has a similar relationship with the Charleston Music Hall, a 966-seat historic theater, as it does with the Carolina. NS2 co-promoted 70 shows in Charleston in the past year, including Keb’ Mo’, Gregg Allman, St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Shovels & Rope and Scott Bradlee’s Post Modern Juke Box.
“After 25 years of promoting shows throughout North Carolina it’s exciting for us to have a partnership with the Carolina Theatre,” said Darin Lashinsky, CEO of NS2 “We look forward to putting roots down in Durham’s vibrant downtown and continuing our mission of enhancing this community’s thriving music scene.”
“The Carolina Theatre is a perfect fit for our vision of bringing a wide array of entertainment to the Southeast,” Brian Penix, Talent Buyer at NS2, said. “The Carolina provides an ideal showroom for established artists looking to provide their fans with an intimate entertainment experience, as well as emerging talent who will gain valuable exposure in this market.”
The first co-promotions under the new deal have already been booked. Tickets for shows by the Wood Brothers (Oct. 12) and the Mavericks (October 21) will go on sale Friday, July 15 at 10 a.m.
Other additions to the theatre’s event calendar under the new agreement will be added on a rolling basis.
Tickets to all shows at the Carolina Theatre will continue to be sold at its box office, through the venue’s website — carolinatheatre.org — and at Ticketmaster.com. All operations, marketing, and day-to-day business involving the co-promotions will continue to be managed locally by the Theatre’s existing staff.
Carolina Theatre of Durham, Inc. will continue to rent the city-owned building to other local arts organizations, schools, nonprofits and corporate entities as it has done since 1994.
Independent of NS2, the Carolina will continue to present mission-driven performing arts programming, its Arts Discovery Education Series for schoolchildren and its award-winning independent film programs and festivals such as the North Carolina Gay + Lesbian Film Festival, the Nevermore Film Festival and its renowned Retro Film Series.
The Carolina Theatre will also continue to host local organizations and signature Durham events, including nationally and internationally renowned happenings such as the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, the Art of Cool and Moogfest. Celebrating its 90th anniversary, the Carolina Theatre has been in the heart of downtown Durham since 1926.