Charleston Symphony opens its new home

Posted on: October 19, 2015

“The just-opened Gaillard Center underwent its first public stress test on Sunday as more than 1,800 patrons and donors filled its event spaces,” reports Alan Parker in Monday’s (10/19) Post & Courier (Charleston, S.C.). “The building held up nicely to both heavy use and intense scrutiny.… The occasion was the Gaillard’s formal grand opening gala concert, featuring acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma, the Charleston Symphony Orchestra (led by its new music director Ken Lam) and the CSO Chorus.” The program, which took place in the Martha and John Rivers Performance Hall, included Dvorák’s Cello Concerto, Respighi’s Pines of Rome, and Handel’s Zadok the Priest. “In the great civic temple of [Mayor] Joe Riley and [Board Chair] Martha Rivers Ingram, concertgoers buzzed and murmured their contentment.… It felt as if Charleston had arrived on an elevated cultural plane.… The old, acoustically imperfect Gaillard Municipal Auditorium was largely remade over the course of three years into an extended neo-Classical structure that houses the performance hall, an expansive exhibition space, and city offices.… The $142 million Gaillard Center is paid for entirely. Half the cost was covered by the city, half by private donations.… Charleston now possesses a performance hall that can be counted among the country’s finest.”

Posted October 19, 2015

Pictured: Patrons arrive for the Gaillard Gala celebrating the first performance in the 1,800-seat concert hall, October 18, 2015. Photo by Grace Beahm / Post and Courier