Lees-McRae Summer Theatre

Get ready for a season of musicals! For more than three decades, Lees-McRae Summer Theatre has been providing high quality, professional theatre to the community and summer visitors of the area. Referred to as the “Gem of the High Country,” the company produces a variety of theatre, but specializes in musicals—Golden Age classics to the newest Broadway hits, and even original works. Each summer the productions are brought to life by the hard work of a 150+ member company who join us in the mountains from all over the country to share their talents.

A Statement about COVID-19 and the 2021 Season

Lees-McRae Summer Theatre (LMST) is excited to share our 2021 season with you!

LMST places the health and safety of its company members and patrons at the forefront of every decision we make. We’ve worked closely with the Lees-McRae College administration and local health experts with our planning, as well as being guided by protocols from the CDC and best practices established by national theatre organizations. 

Before you purchase your tickets and arrive at the theatre, we ask that you plan for the following *protocols:

  • If you’re feeling ill, do not come to the performance. Please call our box office and we’ll be more than glad to exchange your tickets.
  • When you arrive at the theatre, you’ll have your temperature taken by our staff. This is mandatory.
  • You’ll be required to wear a mask that fully covers your nose and mouth while inside our facilities, including throughout the performance. Our mask policy is based on the current North Carolina mandates and is mandatory—no mask, no performance, no exceptions. Please Note: Face shields are not considered masks and cannot be used in place of one.

We’re keeping our audiences safe by strictly enforcing the above policies, cleaning all areas between performances, reducing our audience sizes, and socially distancing all patrons.  

Brochures will be mailed out in early April and we will begin processing mail order tickets and open online sales in May, as we gear up for our first performances in June! 

We’ve missed each of you and are so excited to welcome you back to Hayes Auditorium safely this summer.

*These protocols for LMST are current as of March 18, 2021. They are subject to change as mandates and policies are updated.

2021 Season

 
Music and Lyrics by William Finn
Book by Rachel Sheinkin
Conceived by Rebecca Feldman
Additional Material by Jay Reiss
Originally directed on Broadway by James Lapine
Originally produced on Broadway by David Stone, James L. Nederlander, Barabara Witman, Patrick Catullo, Barrington Stage Company, Second Stage Theatre

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

7 p.m. Shows: June 19, 22, 23, 24, 26
2 p.m. Shows: June 20, 25, 27

Directed by Gabriel Vanover

Called “the funniest musical of the decade” and praised for its unique balance of charm and comedy, this bright and witty, award-winning musical is a riotous ride, complete with audience participation. The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee follows an eclectic group of six spellers as they vie for the spelling championship of a lifetime. While candidly disclosing hilarious and touching stories from their lives, the contestants spell their way through a series of words, hoping never to hear the soul-crushing "ding" of the bell that signals the end of the road for them. Six spellers enter but only one will leave with the title of C-H-A-M-P-I-O-N—and you’ll leave sore from laughing!

Please note: Due to its humor, this production is estimated to be rated PG-13 and is not recommended for children. 

 
Music and Lyrics by Jt Oaks and Tommy Oaks

Book written by Dr. Janet Barton Speer
Logo illustration by Shannon Bowyer

America's Artist:
The Norman Rockwell Story

7 p.m. Shows: July 27, 28, 30, 31
2 p.m. Shows: July 25, 29, 31, and Aug. 1

Directed by Dr. Janet Barton Speer

From the creators of From the Mountaintop: The Edgar Tufts Story and The Denim King: The Moses Cone Story, this new musical brings to life the work of iconic American artist, Norman Rockwell. Creating more than 4,000 pieces of art in his lifetime, Rockwell captured the essence of America with each paint stroke, from Rosie the Riveter to The Four Freedoms, with his paintings and illustrations reflecting America as we wish it to be. This musical, with a lush score and heart-warming book, explores the life and art of America’s artist, Norman Rockwell.