RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — A nonprofit theatre in Raleigh is getting ready for its first performance on a new stage.

Lauren Kennedy Brady, a former Broadway star and Raleigh native, runs Theatre Raleigh.

In June of 2020, she says she moved the theatre to a new 18,000-square-foot space on Old Wake Forest Road to stay afloat during the pandemic.

The new location was a former church, which she says had no walls and bad carpet.

To convert it into the performing arts hub, Kennedy Brady raised $500,000 as part of an ongoing $1 million capital campaign.

It now has a lobby, practice rooms, rehearsal studios, a scene shop and the main stage theatre.

The theatre has new walls, flooring and technical balconies.

Kennedy Brady says she still has a lot of friends from her time on Broadway, and her mission for Theatre Raleigh is to bring in national talent to perform with local artists.

“It’s such a great side by side kind of atmosphere where the joy that the local artists have and the passion that they have is inspiring for the New York artists, and the New York artists obviously inspire the local performers as well, so it’s really cool,” she says.

Seven Broadway actors and actresses are featured in Theatre Raleigh’s first show, City of Angels.

The show’s opening night is set for Wednesday.

“I’m really excited for the audiences to actually see a show in the theatre facility. You know, to get to experience something we created,” says Lauren Kennedy Brady.

Theatre Raleigh’s upcoming shows are as follows:

  • City of Angels: August 3 – August 14
  • The Play That Goes Wrong: September 14 – September 25
  • Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812: October 26 – November 6

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