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Our History and Staff

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Our History

1947
1984
2000
2013
1947
1984

Growing Up

From that simple beginning, The Hickory Community Theatre has grown in both success and popularity. The Theatre has always been located in the Old City Hall, and the staff members and volunteers reverently refer to the “jail” (now the scenic shop) and the “firemen’s kitchen”, both of which are still nicknamed after their original functions. A massive renovation effort during the three year-period from 1984-1987 updated the theatre’s auditorium, stage, lobby, dressing rooms and technical facilities.

 

2000
Managing Artistic Director Charles Jeffers retired in 2000 after 40 years of distinguished service to the theatre. At that time, Pamela Livingstone became the new Managing Artistic Director. In 2005, Pamela moved into the position of Artistic Director while John Rambo was hired to be Managing Director. The two head the job of fulfilling the mission of the theatre, with the help of John Smith, Technical Director, Christine Stinson, Administrative Director, Jean Krapfel Bookkeeper, a Board of Directors, and hundreds of volunteers.
2013

Movin’ On Up

In 2013, the theatre began the two year process of updating it’s facilities — some areas more dramatically then others. After a capital campaign that successfully raised $1.2 million+ the mainstage, bathrooms, box office and Fireman’s Kitchen will get a much needed facelift and, in come cases, complete overhaul.

Our Vision

We intend to create an artistically adventurous
environment that attracts and excites diverse members of the community by providing an expanded understanding of life through the art of quality theatre.

Meet Our Team

Pamela Livingstone

Pamela Livingstone

Artistic Director

Pam has been Managing Artistic Director of Hickory Community Theatre since July of 2000. In September of 2005, she happily turned the Managing half of her job over to John Rambo.

 

She comes to Hickory with an extensive background in theatre and arts administration. A professional director for over 35 years, Pam has directed shows from most every genre of theatre. She has won awards for her directing by the Metrolina Theatre Association, the North Carolina Theatre Conference, as well as in Minneapolis, Chicago, Indiana, Southern California and Portland, Oregon where she lived for eight years before settling here. Starting as a fish in the “Three Billy Goats Gruff” at the age of four, Pam’s acting career led her to membership in Actor’s Equity, AFTRA, and SAG professional actors unions. She has earned her living doing stage, television, industrial, film, commercial and voice-over work.

 

As a teacher, Pam has taught acting, directing and children’s theatre in professional acting schools (including teaching the Shurtleff approach in Chicago for four years) and courses at Indiana University and the University of California at Irvine, where she received her MFA in Directing. During her three years at UCI, she was fortunate to work with Robert Cohen and Keith Fowler, as well as with Jerzy Grotowski, and his assistant Jim Slowiack, studying Objective Drama. Pam is also a member of the Dramatists Guild. Working with Beverly Cleary, the renowned children’s author, Pam wrote and directed Ramona of Klickitat Street for the Northwest Children’s Theatre in Portland. It was their best-selling show to date, helping to contribute to the theatre’s acclaim as the nation’s Outstanding Children’s Theater Company by the American Alliance of Theater and Education.

 

As an Artistic Director, she has worked with the community and professional theater sector — much preferring the community theatre. Here she finds the true love of theatre, where the heart of the art is most alive, and where the most collaborative art form there is finds its inspirational source.

 

Since coming to HCT, Pam has established the RugBug Theatre, the Hickory Community Theatre Endowment Fund, and the Encore Players. Because of her longtime passion for new works and classic theatre, new plays and Shakespeare can be seen regularly on the HCT stage.

 

Pam is thrilled to be living of such a wonderful community working with such talented people in a truly beautiful facility. She wishes to acknowledge her predecessor, Charles Jeffers, who in his tenure of 40 years brought Hickory Community Theatre to such a distinguished place in this community–truly a cornerstone of arts and culture.

John Rambo

John Rambo

Managing Director

John Rambo came to Hickory in 2005 from Sacramento, California with an extensive background in nonprofit management and a life-long love of theatre. He founded his own charity organization, Breaking Barriers Community Services Center in Sacramento in the late 1990’s. Prior to starting Breaking Barriers, John had completed a degree in theatre arts from Sacramento City College with the intent of pursuing a career in theatre management.

 

John’s love of theatre goes back to his early teens, when he worked as a “go-fer” and techie with Foothill Community Theatre in Ft. Collins, Colorado. There’s a funny story in just how that all got started – be sure to ask him about it because it’s a story he loves to tell. He has worked with 17 different theatre companies – in two states – as an actor, stage manager, designer, house manager and technician.

 

His professional work in the nonprofit sector goes back almost 15 years, when he decided that he had to pursue work that had meaning. He has also done free consulting work with other organizations to help his community be a better place to live.

Christine Stinson

Christine Stinson

Administrative Director

Christine moved to Hickory from Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. There she was employed with The Shaw Festival, a professional repertory theatre company in Niagara-on-the-Lake. She graduated from Brock University in Ontario with a BA in Marketing and Politics. She is married to an avid golfer (who is thrilled to be able to play year round here) and has three wonderful children. Christine is an avid reader but at present spends most of her time taxiing her children around to their many and varied activities.

 

Christine’s love of theatre brought her to HCT as a volunteer at first then as part of the staff. She is pleased to be working with such great people in a community theatre that produces plays of such consistent high quality.

Tony Chambers

Tony Chambers

Technical Director

Tony joined the HCT team in January 2014. He jumped in with both feet, helping us present a world premier of The Seamstress.

Charles Jeffers

Charles Jeffers

Managing Artistic Director Emeritus

Charles has worked with the Hickory Community Theatre since 1957. During his tenure HCT grew to be one of the premier community theatres in North Carolina. Its’ volunteer and audience base became the largest per capita in the State.

 

He has directed more than 200 plays and musicals with occasional acting appearances. Productions under his guidance have won awards from both the North Carolina Theatre Conference and the Southeastern Theatre Conference. He has been named Best Actor by NCTC and Best Director by both NCTC and SETC.

 

Charles has served as Chairman of NCTC’s Community Theatre Division and named to The North Carolina Arts Council’s Community Theatre Panel. Locally he has served as President of the Hickory Rotary Club and named a Paul Harris Fellow. He was elected to the Hickory City Schools Board of Education and served as its Chairman.

 

He was the recipient of NCTC’s Marion H. Smith Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006.