Spotlight 2022

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NORTH CAROLINA 505 N. Sycamore Street Rose Hill, NC 28458

SOUTH CAROLINA 4650 Highway 17 South North Myrtle Beach, SC 29582

800.774.9634 • 2

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Magazine Staff Publishing Editor Janis Gilmore

Exec. Editor Art Director Jordan Watkins

Spotlight Coordinator Tabitha McMahon

Finance Director David Olive

Advertising Sales Katie Shuler (843) 913-1400 TOBACCO PRODUCTS ARE PROHIBITED IN THIS THEATER.

WARNING: The audio or video recording of any performance without the written permission of the management is prohibited.

©Copyright 2022. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Spotlight is published by Gilmore Entertainment Group, LLC.

The Carolina Opry Theater P. O. Box 7576 Myrtle Beach, SC 29572 (843) 913 - 4000 (800) 843 - 6779 6


Artist Spotlight- Carolina Opry Theater Executive Producer and Director

Calvin Gilmore Producer/Director

Jeffrey Gilmore Sound Design

Mike Cook

Musical Direction Kevin Hughes ‑ Band Gary Brown ­‑ Vocals

Paul Sweetman

Production Manager

Jerrme Stinnett

Cody Sifford

Stage Manager


Margaret Rice Scott

Lighting Design Video Design

Eric Sendrey

Cast Brad Long

Calvin Gilmore

Chasity Croft Sorrells

Gary Baker

Brian Daggett

Christie Templeton

Gary Brown

Comedy, Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals, Electric Bass

Eric Gumm

Kevin White

Keyboards, Piano, Guitar, Saxophone

Kevin Hughes

Trent Wideman

Emcee, Vocals, Guitar

Vocals, Guitar

Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar

Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Mandolin, Lap Steel, Steel Guitar, Dobro

Percussion, Drums

Delvin Choice Vocals, Piano

Bass Guitar, Vocals, Acoustic Bass, Trumpet, Trombone, Piano

Tangena Church

Colton Cason

All That!

Alexa Peragine Elizabeth Hite


Calvin Gilmore


Hammered Dulcimer, Fiddle, Guitar, Mandolin, Comedy, Vocals, Xylophone



Michael Curtis Mark Clifford Drew Schwierman Ethan Stewart

Vice President


Keyboard, Piano, Trumpet, Vocals


Jeffrey Gilmore



David Olive

Vice President, Director of Marketing

Jordan Watkins

Mollie Cason Taryn Martin

Theater General Manager

Richard Scott



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Looking for things to do in Myrtle Beach? We’ve scoped out the best in Myrtle Beach attractions and restaurants so you don’t have to! Take a look at our list of top things to do in Myrtle Beach. 1

The Carolina Opry Theater - Okay, if you are looking for an incredible time and something you can't do anywhere else – this is it! The Carolina Opry is the original show in Myrtle Beach and still the best in Myrtle Beach. Many have imitated but none have been able to equal the quality and talent of The Carolina Opry and Time Warp. The award-winning shows blend two hours of high-energy music, comedy and dance in a beautiful 2,000 seat theater complete with high-tech lighting and sound. But don't just take our word for it! The shows are highly acclaimed by The New York Times, USA Today, NBC Nightly News, and CNN, and named “Top Attraction in Myrtle Beach” by CNBC. In addition, it is an incredible value compared to live entertainment of this quality in Vegas or New York.



Duplin Winery - Looking for a perfect way to unwind after a long day? Uncork the sweeter side of Myrtle Beach at Duplin Winery, makers of America’s favorite Muscadine wine. Their newest location in North Myrtle Beach is stunning! Kick back with a glass of something cool, or gather some friends for a wine tasting. The staff is ready to educate and entertain you on the winemaking method while you enjoy a delicious tasting. Plus, you can watch the bottling process, relax in the courtyard, and shop in their gorgeous retail store offering wine, fudge, gourmet dips and dressings, wine accessories and some very unique gifts and housewares. It's worth a stop for the gift shop alone!


Hook & Barrel Restaurant - Just a block south from here, you’ll find Myrtle Beach’s freshest new restaurant, Hook & Barrel. With plenty of outdoor seating, and ‘eatertainment’ on the inside, this restaurant is something you won’t want to miss! The menu is packed with delectable dishes, including a market of fresh, sustainable seafood prepared just how you like it. You won’t want to miss their famous Shrimp Scampi, made for you right on the bar top. And don’t forget to check out Croissants Bistro & Bakery, right next door, for freshly roasted coffee and the best brunch in town!


Brookgreen Gardens - Beautiful live oaks, renowned sculpture, rich history – and a zoo for the kids! From its beginning in 1931, this non-profit outdoor museum with its majestic oaks and world-renowned sculpture has been a place to renew your spirit. Relive history as you walk the Lowcountry Trail and tour the only accredited zoo on the Carolina coast, where you will see native animals in their natural habitats. Beautiful gardens, rich historical sites and gracious southern hospitality tempt you to return again and again. Bonus – daytime admission here is good for 7 consecutive days!



Original Benjamin's Calabash Seafood Buffet - A landmark on the Grand Strand, The Original Benjamin's Calabash Seafood Buffet serves fresh local seafood daily. Their award-winning, world-famous buffet introduced Calabash style lightly battered and deepfried seafood to the Myrtle Beach area. They also boast a delicious salad bar, a pasta station, dessert bar and just about any other food you can think of! Not only is their food great, but the restaurant itself is a seafaring adventure with a nautical theme and handcrafted model ships throughout a playroom with a loaded kid-sized play kitchen, a boat with fishing rods, mops for swabbing the deck, and arcade games.


Flamingo Grill - It's no surprise Flamingo Grill is voted "Best All Around Restaurant" year after year! With fried lobster bites, lobster tail and filet, shrimp and grits, seared tuna peppercorn, flounder, salmon, a number of pasta dishes and so much more - there is something for everyone and everything is delicious! You'll love the upscale art deco decor as well. If you are looking for a local spot with nationally renowned cuisine, this is it!



Angelo's Steak and Pasta - On the South end of the beach you'll find Angelo's Steak and Pasta, a local Italian restaurant known for "the greatest steaks in the universe." That may sound like an exaggeration, but the steaks really are incredible! They are hand cut on premises, perfectly aged and served on a sizzling plate. (I order mine rare and cook each bite to my liking on the sizzling plate!) If you are looking for a little more variety, they also have an "all-you-can-eat" Italian buffet. Of course, they also have their full Italian menu, appetizers, full bar and some great early bird deals. All of their entrees, including the buffet, are authentic family recipes with their own personal touch.



Carolina Seafood & Steak - A family-friendly restaurant located near the famed Restaurant Row in Myrtle Beach, Carolina Seafood & Steak boasts a variety of Southern flavors. From prime cuts of meat to seafood to burgers to Italian dishes, this restaurant has a little bit of everything. Carolina Seafood & Steak also features a wide kids menu, delicious desserts and great rates at happy hour!

Fiesta Mexicana - These guys are the experts on Mexican cuisine on this side of the border! Quality is something Fiesta Mexicana takes very seriously; everything is made to order from only the freshest ingredients. The menu, designed by renowned chef Gabriel Hernandez, is a blend of traditional recipes and delicious new creations. There is something for everyone from sizzling fajitas to cool cocktails! A family-owned restuarant, you can count on quality service and attention to detail in a clean and comfortable atmosphere.


The Chesapeake House - If you really want some local flavor, you have to try The Chesapeake House. Family owned and operated since 1971, it's a Myrtle Beach landmark and a long-standing family tradition. From their scenic waterway views to their fresh local seafood, USDA steaks, delicious homemade salad dressings, award-winning fish stew and world famous cinnamon rolls baked fresh daily, you'll have an evening to remember!


For more dining, lodging and vacation package savings, visit: 18


Calvin Gilmore A profile of the director, producer and founder of Gilmore Entertainment

“...he participated in

Norman Rockwell

a vanishing



alvin Gilmore grew up in the Ozarks C of southern Missouri. The son of a farmer, on a third-generation farm, he

participated in a vanishing Norman Rockwell lifestyle which centered on the one-room community schoolhouse, the country church that his family had helped to found, and the community of farmers that banded together on threshing days. By the time he was twenty, he had taken his guitar to Kansas City, where he worked in the Hallmark mailroom by day and sang in restaurants and bars in the evenings. When a Nashville label encouraged him to execute a quality demo tape, Calvin needed some capital. He decided to try his hand at real estate, moving to the Lake of the Ozarks, a resort area not too far from where he grew up. His life took an unexpected detour when he met with almost immediate success: within a year he was able to buy the real estate company for which he worked. Just a week after closing the deal, Calvin married Janis Walker. A few years (and two children) down the road, Calvin realized that he wasn’t doing what he had always meant to do. A devoted family man, he wouldn’t consider a life on the road. He came up with the idea of creating a musical variety show so that he could perform and remain in one place: home. It took him three years, but by 1986 he had selected Myrtle Beach as a likely market, found a theater (he would renovate a defunct nightclub), and worked out the financing (he would risk everything); he and Janis moved with their young children to Surfside Beach in March 1986. The success of The Carolina Opry is the stuff of legend. Over the years, Calvin Gilmore and his casts have entertained millions of Myrtle Beach visitors. In 2015, the show celebrated its 30th anniversary, a milestone by any standard. His exceptionally high standards for talent and production quality have been recognized by the industry

and the public. The Carolina Opry is the only show to have won the coveted Governor’s Cup (South Carolina’s highest tourism award), the only show to have been voted the state’s Most Outstanding Attraction, and the only show to be voted #1 every year. Gilmore has spawned the growth of a new entertainment industry on the Grand Strand of South Carolina, and under his leadership The Carolina Opry has blossomed into an institution. It has garnered coverage from NBC Nightly News, USA Today, CNN, Variety, Hollywood Reporter, The New York Times, and a host of others. Thirty years later, Calvin is still on the forefront of the ever-changing entertainment industry. In 2003 he began appearing on the stage of the world famous Grand Ole Opry, where he never misses an opportunity to invite their loyal nationwide radio audience to visit Myrtle Beach. In 2005, he introduced Good Vibrations and, more recently, t he newest production in that series, Time Warp, featuring the iconic sights and sounds of the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. In 2014 Gilmore debuted Thunder and Light, a live dance, laser and magic show starring the renowned All That! Clogging Group. In 2015 Gilmore introduced the Myrtle Beach Performing Arts Series bringing celebrity guest artists encompassing a number of genres, including music, comedy and authors. As we celebrated the landmark of our 35th anniversary, Calvin reflected on the events of those years: the pursuit of excellence, the creativity, the struggles, and the successes. “I have had the great blessing of being able to do what I love and make a living at it. My heartfelt thanks to all of those who have enjoyed the show down through the years and sent their customers and guests. May we all enjoy many more together.”


Meet The Cast Brad Long

Emcee, Vocals, Guitar Brad began his journey on his musical path at a very early age, playing both drums and guitar at the many live music venues in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He quickly became a crowd favorite for his powerhouse rock-edged vocals. Brad's clear, powerful, yet controlled tenor voice and rock-tinged country style shout “Nashville star.” He has a strong work ethic and a desire to continually improve. Brad has shared the stage with such luminaries as Dwight Yoakam, Jason Aldean, Craig Morgan, Little Big Town, and Justin Moore. He has polished his stage performances to a high gloss and continues to strive to improve. In short, he’s doing all of the things a budding country star needs to do to gain lasting success.


Eric Gumm

Comedy, Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals, Electric Bass

Eric grew up in the small towns of Weaubleau and Warsaw, Missouri, where his parents (both school teachers) instilled in him a love of music and sports. When Eric was seven, his father taught him to play the guitar, and he grew up playing and singing in church with his father and his sister. Eric enjoys playing basketball, softball, and golf, watching the Kansas City Chiefs on Sundays, riding his motorcycle, and spending time with his grandson Hunter. Eric reads the Bible daily and accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior when he was nine years old. He is married to the love of his life, Rita, an original cast member of The Carolina Opry, and whom he met onstage there in March of 1989. Eric joined Calvin Gilmore Productions in 1989 as an original cast member of The Dixie Jubilee in North Myrtle Beach. Eric loves to make people laugh and says that being in The Carolina Opry cast “is like having a second family.”


Artist Spotlight Delvin Choice

Vocals, Piano It may have been in Hollywood that Delvin won over America and blew away all four judges as he soared to the finals on NBC’s The Voice, but that talent was home grown right here in South Carolina! In fact, Choice was recognized by the state with two resolutions in appreciation of musical accomplishments and contributions. A singer from birth, Delvin is an Alumni of Greenville Fine Arts Center, where he studied classical music for four years, and a graduate of Wade Hampton High School. Delvin’s diverse background includes numerous awards and theatrical roles including Ain’t Misbehavin’, Roger and Hammerstein’s Carousel, Motown Magic, Little Shop of Horrors, Smoky Joe’s Café, Ragtime the Musical, Seussical The Musical, Pippin and more. In recent years, Delvin has been honored to perform the National Anthem for the Charlotte Hornets and the Carolina Panthers. Recently completing a tour with multi-grammy nominated artist Musiq Soulchild, Delvin is ready to set some new roots in Myrtle Beach.


Christie Templeton

Vocals Christie Templeton is from Lake Wylie, SC. By the age of 10, Christie had several musicals, talent shows, and TV appearances under her belt, including the lead role in the production of Annie. Known as the "little one with the big voice," Christie's versatility is unmatched. She was a featured vocalist for Grammy Award winning Lee Greenwood and has shared the stage with Billy Ray Cyrus, John Michael Montgomery, and the Oak Ridge Boys. Her greatest accomplishment is the day her family "accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, for without Him nothing is possible." Christie shares her home with original cast member and true love Steve Templeton and their children, Lauren and Cole. She gives credit to God, her loving husband, family and fans. "The gift of music is a special thing to have, and I will continue to use it for His glory and honor as long as I am able to."


Artist Spotlight Gary Brown

Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Mandolin, Lap Steel, Steel Guitar, Dobro, Musical Director Gary, who was born in Walnut Cove, North Carolina, attributes his choice of music as a career to his parents’ love of music, particularly bluegrass. He began traveling at age fifteen with the band Boot Hill from WinstonSalem. After high school Gary moved to Knoxville, where he attended the University of Tennessee and met his wife Martha. They married in 1980 and worked in bands together, traveling throughout the next decade. In 1989 Gary and Martha became original members of Calvin Gilmore’s Dixie Jubilee in North Myrtle Beach. In his spare time Gary is an avid tennis player.

Kevin Hughes

Bass Guitar, Vocals, Acoustic Bass, Piano, Trumpet, Trombone, Musical Director Originally from Petersburg, Virginia, Kevin has been playing music since the age of five and is accomplished on the piano, drums, trumpet, 26

and trombone. When he is not playing bass at The Carolina Opry or writing and recording tunes, Kevin, who has a degree in computer programming, is busy as a network developer. He lives in Myrtle Beach with his wife Marsha and their two children.

Trent Wideman

Hammered Dulcimer, Fiddle, Guitar, Mandolin, Comedy, Vocals, Xylophone Trent grew up at the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri. A Missouri state fiddling champion in 1994, Trent appeared in the Main Street Music Hall, Lake of the Ozarks, where he later formed his own show, Country Lights USA. In 2002 Trent performed on Fox Television’s 30 Seconds to Fame. He then moved to Branson, Missouri, where he was the featured comedian and musician for the critically acclaimed Country Tonite show. Trent gives thanks to the Lord for the talent he’s been blessed with and feels lucky to be able to share it with people everyday.

Artist Spotlight Colton Cason

Keyboard, Piano, Trumpet, Vocals Colton began his musical career by learning to play the trumpet in junior high; from there he expanded his range with the addition of bass and acoustic guitar and the keyboard. It wasn't until later that Colton discovered his unbelievable vocal gift and developed a passion for singing, heavily influenced by Frank Sinatra and Michael Bublé. Colton's original song "Take Me In Your Arms" was featured in the film, "The Investigator," released nationally in 2013. Colton has been featured as both a vocalist and solo

trumpet in the State College of Florida Jazz Band and won the Solo Jazz Competition at the Florida State Community C o l l e g e Symposium in 2012. He was featured as a solo vocalist with the Venice Pops Orchestra and the Sarasota Pops Orchestra.


Artist Spotlight Chasity Croft Sorrells

Vocals From a 3-year-old standing on a chair to sing before her father’s sermons, to traveling with her mother singing Southern Gospel music, singing is all this South Carolina girl has ever known. Honors received in show choirs, chamber ensembles and Broadway reviews lead to a scholarship to Lee University, where she had the opportunity to sing internationally in places such as Sydney, Venice, Rome, and even at the Vatican. After college, Chas headlined as Tina Turner in Chattanooga, was later recognized as a featured soloist on Dove Awardnominated project “Lifestyle,” recorded with Second Edition and the world-renowned Lee Singers, and has been featured on Grammy-nominated projects. She was named Tennessee’s NACMAI Entertainer of the Year in addition to other awards and titles. Chas is married to the extremely talented Craig Sorrells and together they have 4 beautiful children, Selah Mercy, Zion Israel, Skyler and Callie.


Tangena Church Vocals

A native of North Carolina, Tangena brings a variety of performance experiences to the stage of The Carolina Opry Theater. She began her singing career at four years of age at church; after graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Tangena traveled extensively abroad as a featured entertainer on various cruise lines and in the U.S. on the Broadway National Tour of The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber. Other theater credits include Man of La Mancha, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Cabaret. Tangena and her husband Pete are the proud parents of beautiful Sadie Katherine Mishler and Deacon Mishler.

Artist Spotlight Gary Baker

Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar A native of Charleston, SC, Gary comes from a long line of musicians. He is a graduate of Winthrop University, with a B.A. in Music. Gary has played The Grand Ole Opry forty times, appeared in several music videos, and has shared the stage with some of

today’s most popular country artists such as Keith Urban, Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, Gretchen Wilson, and Sara Evans. In addition to playing guitar, Gary also writes and records music. He has been blessed with a son, Lindsay, who also plays music.


Artist Spotlight Kevin White

Keyboards, Piano, Guitar, Saxophone Kevin White grew up in a small town near the gulf coast in southwest Alabama. He began playing the piano at the age of five. Kevin attended Northeast Mississippi Community College where he majored in music theory. His professional career began as a cast member on The Denny Hilton Show, at Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri. He has performed in other variety shows such as Calvin Gilmore's Dixie Jubilee and Tribute The Concert, and at Bobby Helm's Celebrity Theater. Kevin has toured with country artists such as Mickey Gilley, David Allan Coe, Shelby Lynn, Randy Travis, and Craig Morgan. He has also had success as a songwriter with such artists as Billy Ray Cyrus and Atlantic Starr. He attributes all of his talents and success to God as being the source and provider. Kevin currently resides in Myrtle Beach with his wife Andrea and daughter Savannah.


Brian Daggett

Percussion, Drums Inspired by his musical parents, this Arlington, VA native has been playing drums since the age of 5. Brian performed with the Arlington and McLean Symphonies in Virginia at just 13 years old and later graduated from the Atlanta Institute of Music with honors. Brian toured the world for over 15 years, including a European Tour with Grammy Nominated Reggae Band SOJA and US tours supporting acts such as Snoop Dogg, Ludacris, Toots and the Maytals, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, and Grammy award winning Reggae Band Black Uhuru. Brian’s most recent tour included performing with singer/song writer Mike Pinto in over 40 states. He has released 5 full length albums with Atlanta Based rock band Groove Stain, and has worked with Grammy Award winning producers Shondrae Crawford and Rico Wade of Outkast, Ludacris and Usher. Brian is very privileged to be an endorsee and part of the Sabian Cymbal family. Being able to play drums, work with this fabulous cast and crew every day, and having the time to spend with his wife, Ashley, and son, Landen, is the greatest part about his job.

Artist Spotlight Jeffrey Gilmore

Producer/Director Jeff comes by his production abilities naturally, having grown up in the business. He was eight years old when his family moved from Missouri to South Carolina to start The Carolina Opry. In those early days he pitched in by carrying ice to concessions stands and props to cast members. After completing his college degree in Chicago, Illinois, he moved back to Myrtle Beach and joined the family business. He is executive vice president and acts as producer and director under his father as well as taking a seat on the company’s advisory board. He also coaches The Carolina Opry softball team, which participates in the Midnight League in Myrtle Beach, competing with other theaters and attractions. Jeff and his wife, Carrie, enjoy spending time with their two children and traveling together as a family.


Paul Sweetman

Lighting Design From the moment Paul saw the Broadway show Camelot, he knew his destiny was to be in the field of lighting. He attributes much of his education to his mentor, Alex Von Saher, who taught him the true art of lighting and gave him the freedom to create on such international shows as Tri Amici and Entré Me. Paul’s career spans over 35 years and e v e r y e n t e rtainment genre, from live TV to musical theater. He has been involved with such artists as Crowder, Newsboy, the Oak Ridge Boys, Phil Driscoll, UB 40, Def Leppard, U2, and Genesis. Paul was blessed to spend 28 years of his career at The Carolina Opry Theater beside his best friend, creative partner and wife, the late Diane “Wendy” Sweetman.


Artist Spotlight Cody Sifford

Production Manager Cody was born with music in his blood and, as son of long-time emcee Steve Sifford, he literally grew up in The Carolina Opry Theater; he began working front of house at age 14. He went on to earn a BA at College of the Ozarks and performed in shows in Branson, Missouri as a guitarist and vocalist. In Branson, he also worked as a lighting operator, stage manager, and show producer. Cody returned home to Myrtle Beach in 2016 and performed locally as a guitarist and vocalist. For 12 years, he directed worship and technical teams for churches in Missouri, Orlando, Florida, and the Myrtle Beach Area. Cody is very happy to be back, truly at home at The Carolina Opry, working alongside world-class performers and technicians.

32 32

Jerrme Stinnett

Video Design Born in Shawnee, Kansas, Jerrme has had an active role in professional production since the age of 17. His family originally moved to the Grand Strand from Branson, Missouri in 1989, when his father Joe accepted his first position with Gilmore Entertainment. Part of the Carolina Opry family early on, Jerrme grew up a theater kid, fueling his passion for all things tech. Jerrme says he is, "most thankful to work in a theater that he loves where he can share his passion with so many others that he admires." He enjoys spending his off time with his wife Angela and their daughter Ellie.


Artist Spotlight Margaret Rice Scott

Costuming, Choreography Margaret, a native of Latta, South Carolina, attended the Emmalyn Davis School of Dance in Marion, South Carolina, from age three until her high school graduation. She then ventured to Cincinnati, Ohio, where she studied musical theatre at the Cincinnati C o l l e g e Conservatory of Music. After 6 years Margaret returned to her roots in the Carolinas and visited Myrtle Beach, where she auditioned for Calvin Gilmore. Margaret joined The Carolina Opry cast in 1990, adding a new dimension to the show — dance. Margaret enjoys spending time with her husband Rich and their daughter Stone.


Michael Cook

Sound Design A native of Lexington, NC, Mike's first job in the Audio Field was for SE Systems as an audio technician and sales manager. During the '80s and '90s he provided sound services for national acts such as The Beach Boys, The Doobie Brothers, and Petra. During that time he was hired as audio technician by The Gatlin Brothers and spent the next 15 years as their engineer. He moved to Myrtle Beach, and in 1999 he started his own production company - MC Sound, Light, and Video. He appreciates working with the stateof-the-art electronics at The Carolina Opry Theater as well as some of the most talented musicians and entertainers in the nation.



Artist Spotlight: All That! Clogging Group Mike Curtis: One of the most recognizable names in the clogging world, Mike Curtis began appearing in individual clogging competitions over 20 years ago and has won hundreds of titles including two Duet National Championships. After years in the competition circuit, Curtis knew it was time for something more, and he formed the group All That! with three of his best friends and former competitors. All That! soon stepped out of the clogging world and into mainstream success. Mark Clifford: Mark started his dancing career at the age of 5. In 1996 he accepted a dance scholarship to Mars Hill College, where he studied and received a BA in Corporate Communication. As a national instructor Mark has traveled across the United States teaching master classes and choreography for many clogging teams. Mark has performed in Austria, Germany, Italy, Ireland, and now Hong Kong. Mark has been a member of All That! since the group's inception. Ethan Stewart: Ethan Stewart has been clogging since the age of 6. After dancing throughout the country on a competitive team for 14 years, he joined the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Show in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and is now happy to make his home with All That! Clogging Group at The Carolina Opry Theater. Drew Schwierman: Born and raised in a small farm town in Indiana, Drew started dancing in his local 4-H clogging group at the age of 6. He started competing in National clogging competitions at the age of 13, where he danced with National Championship teams based out of Kentucky, Alabama and California. He has traveled all over the US, Europe & Japan performing and competing. Drew has recently traveled from his home of over 10 years in Los Angeles to Myrtle Beach to perform at the Carolina Opry Theater!

Among their renowned performances: Fox’s 30 Seconds to Fame, ABC Family’s Dance Fever, CBS’s Star Search, semi-finalists for a second time on NBC’s, America’s Got Talent, featured dancers in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and, most recently, featured half-time entertainment at the NFL's Carolina Panthers Game. All That! was also presented the Pioneer Award, clogging’s highest honor, for their huge contribution to promoting the dance. 36


The Carolina Opry Theater Dancers Alexa Peragine, Dance Captain: Born and raised near the Jersey Shore, Alexa began dancing at an early age, attending Center Stage Dance & Theater School and the Freehold Regional High School performing arts program. Alexa received her BFA at Point Park University in Pittsburgh and has trained with Alvin Ailey, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Complexions and numerous companies throughout the USA. She recently originated two shows with Princess Cruises by Stephen Schwartz, Al Blackstone, Dan Levine and John Tartaglia. After 3 years traveling the world dancing for Princess, Alexa is honored and grateful to start her journey here at The Carolina Opry Theater! Elizabeth Hite: Originally from Abbeville, SC, Elizabeth began her dance training right here in Myrtle Beach at Carolina Forest Performing Arts Academy. While at CFPAA, she performed with such companies as New York City Dance Alliance, Hollywood Vibe, Show Stoppers, K.A.R and State Dance. Elizabeth has had the opportunity to dance in many professional Myrtle Beach productions. Mollie Cason: A seventh generation Texan, Mollie began dancing at an early age and has trained and performed across the United States with Houston Ballet, Orlando Ballet, The School of American Ballet in New York City and numerous other entertainment productions. Honored with many national awards and scholarships in all dance styles, Mollie is excited to have the opportunity to come home to Myrtle Beach and perform at The Carolina Opry Theater! Taryn Martin: A native of South Carolina, Taryn competed worldwide as a young dancer, receiving numerous awards and nationally ranking solos. Expanding her expertise, she received her Solo Seal with Royal Ballet and attended The American Academy of Ballet and NYCDA Summer Intensives in New York. At the age of 12 and 13, she was cast as Clara for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular in Nashville, TN. She recently traveled with Royal Caribbean Cruise lines as a dancer/aerialist and has performed locally with Legends in Concert, The Carolina Opry, and Le Grande Cirque. She’s blessed to be back in her hometown theater! 38





40 Years of Family Shows The Attraction That Changed the Face of the Beach Forever

On June 2, 1986, when Calvin Gilmore opened his doors to the first paying customers of The Carolina Opry, few locals or vacationers knew what to expect. Another country bar? Maybe Hee Haw at the beach? What they got was a breath of fresh air. A sensational show in a cool theater. The kind of show you could take your kids or your grandmother to—but it also blew back the hair of your hard-toplease brother-in-law from New York. By late summer the word had gotten around that something spectacular was happening at The Carolina Opry, and the long line of patrons snaked out the door and around the building. Tour buses stood bumper to bumper. Gilmore had only 12 entertainers and musicians to work with, himself among the number, but they packed a wallop. Eight years later, the dam broke. Imitators rushed to cash in on The Carolina Opry’s success. The Dixie Stampede (now Pirate’s Voyage) grabbed his kite tail by sharing his prime site in Myrtle Beach. The investment group that created the Alabama Theater used Gilmore’s architect 40

and his literal blueprints to build a theater. Burroughs and Chapin planned an entertainment complex that they hoped would corner the whole market with numerous shows. Thirty years later, The Carolina Opry remains the top show in the market and Gilmore stands alone as a producer, performer, and entrepreneur. Though some have survived,

none have managed to create the high quality production standard or the customer loyalty of Gilmore Entertainment. Why? Well, maybe because the cook is in the kitchen. The show is not created by a hired gun from somewhere else; it is written, produced, and directed right here in Myrtle Beach by the onsite owner. And it may be worth noting that it is owned entirely by the Gilmore family. Alone. No consortium of hotelowners, no faceless corporate group. 843.448.8379

The Grand Strand’s only professional symphony orchestra providing classical, pops, and chamber concerts FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE SYMPHONY, HOVER YOUR iPHONE OR ANDROID CAMERA OVER THE CODE TO THE LEFT AND TAP THE LINK THAT POPS UP ON YOUR SCREEN.


Cont. from page 40 The inauguration and phenomenal success of The Carolina Opry Christmas Special (“The Christmas Show of the South”) made Myrtle Beach a year-round destination. Many may have forgotten that thirty years ago Myrtle Beach rolled up the sidewalks after Labor Day. It was hard to find a restaurant open for lunch in December. Then the Christmas tour buses began to roll to The Carolina Opry Christmas Special. Families from throughout the region came to Myrtle Beach in December just to see the show. Hotels and restaurants not only opened— they filled. And a new seasonal market was born. And along the way, spurred on by the entertainment boom that Gilmore inspired, the Grand Strand experienced exponential growth. The buzz brought heavy hitters like Marriott and Hard Rock Café and Medieval Times to the banquet table. Gilmore himself has performed numerous times on The Grand Ole Opry, was recognized for his accomplishments by the South Carolina state senate, and was bestowed the Palmetto Patriot award. His shows stand alone on the Grand Strand with major media accolades include NBC Nightly News, USA Today, CNN, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, The New York Times, Detroit Free Press, and a host of others. The Huffington Post recently noted that Gilmore’s shows featured “World-Class entertainers that blew us away . . . literally!” Gilmore’s shows are the only shows to have won every major South Carolina tourism award, including the coveted South Carolina Governer’s Cup and Most


Outstanding Attraction and are the only shows to be voted #1 for 30 years. Now approaching our 40th anniversary season, The Calvin Gilmore Theater brings a level of production diversity never seen in Myrtle Beach. The theater hosts 3 original productions: The classic Carolina Opry show, Time Warp and the muchloved Carolina Opry Christmas Special (“The Christmas Show of the South”). The theater is also home to the Myrtle Beach Performing Arts series, featuring celebrity concerts like Dwight Yoakam, Gladys Knight, Blues Traveler, Gaither Vocal Band, Leann Rimes, Art Garfunkel and Travis Tritt as well as uncanny tribute tributes to artists like ABBA, The Bee Gees, Michael Jackson, the Eagles and more. If the Carolina Opry Theater doesn’t have what you want, then you may need to check your pulse! You know the old saying: There's nothing like an original.


It’s About More Than Money. It’s About Return On Investment. At United Community Bank, we believe life is about more than money–it’s about making time for those things that matter most. With hassle-free solutions and personalized service, we help manage your finances so you can focus on your greatest investments. Speak with us today to learn more about our banking solutions that allow you the time you need to invest in life’s most important things.


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one nibble

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