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Conference & Stage Expo
For the Record

USITT’s 2011 Annual Conference & Stage Expo will be centered at the Charlotte Convention Center, close to hotels and the rejuvenated City Center.

Photo/Courtesy Visit Charlotte

Charlotte's Got USITT in 2011

Barbara E.R. Lucas
Sightlines Editor

Charlotte, North Carolina has been chosen as the site for USITT’s 2011 Annual Conference & Stage Expo. The site was announced by VP for Conferences David W. Will.

“Charlotte is a great location with great access for a large number of our members,” Mr. Will said. “We’ve been talking about North Carolina as a Conference location for the past 10 years, and we are pleased to be able to make this happen in 2011.”

Dates for the Annual Conference will be Wednesday, March 9 to Saturday, March 12. Stage Expo will return to its traditional Thursday through Saturday run.

The city uses the theme “Charlotte’s Got a Lot” and that applies to performing arts, entertainment, and attractions. A broad range of performance opportunities are available -- from Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte, Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, North Carolina Dance Theatre, and Opera Carolina, to the Sprint Square Center for the Arts & Education and the NC Blumenthal Performing Arts Center.

Those attending the Conference will be able to visit the NASCAR Hall of Fame, scheduled to open in May 2010, the newly opened Harvey B. Gantt African-American Center for Arts + Culture, the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, and many galleries, museums, and historic sites.

Just steps from the Charlotte Convention Center, where most Conference events will be held, is a huge assortment of food and activities which are part of Center City – from chains like Dave & Busters to the homegrown Something Classic Café and The EpiCentre.

USITT had been considering Fort Lauderdale in 2011 but “we were unable to finalize details which would make it work for us and our guests,” Mr. Will said. “The shift to Charlotte is a wonderful opportunity for us to kick off our second half century.”

For 2011, USITT is exploring themed programming to highlight a specific segment of sessions tied to a central idea. Commission leadership is currently exploring options for those types of programs in Charlotte.

Mr. Will said he has heard from a large contingent of USITT members who are eager to have a Conference on the west coast, and the organization has been listening. “We’re very pleased to be heading back to Long Beach,” Mr. Will said. Those familiar with the Long Beach Convention Center should be pleased that the 2012 Annual Conference has been scheduled for March 28 to 31, 2012 in that Southern California city.

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