CHARLOTTE – The McColl Family Theatre at ImaginOn in Uptown Charlotte will become the home of Comedy Central's "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” this September, during the Democratic National Convention.
The deal was approved by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library Board of Trustees Monday morning.
"The theater is delighted to join the library in showcasing this incredible facility, not only to the Democratic National Convention, but also to an international television audience,” said Bruce LaRowe, executive director of the Children's Theatre of Charlotte.
The library board and the Children's Theatre said while there was other interest in ImaginOn, this was the best option.
"We were not really wanting to do a breakfast event, a lunch event, an afternoon event, when we could do something that was across the entire building and actually before the DNC actually starts so that's why,” said LaRowe.
The Daily Show, known as “The most trusted name in fake news,” will rent the McColl Theater, support spaces, and two rehearsal rooms for about 12 days, 24 hours a day. The price tag comes in just shy of $100,000.
The revenue is welcome after years of budget cuts. The library system lost about $10 million in the past two years; the Children's Theatre lost about $500,000. They'll split the profit 50-50.
"Both would be going into the organizations' general unrestricted fund, so we could use them for whatever the most pressing need is,” said Vick Phillips, CEO of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library.
That means there will be money for books, improved digital collections, or certain school or community programs that have been scaled back. But library leaders said it's not just a great deal for them, but for the 125 staff members coming to produce the show, as well.
"They're one block away from the arena, so the opportunity to be able to have elected individuals and dignitaries be here in a wonderful facility like this with the proximity, was also compelling for them as they were considering facilities,” said LaRowe.
The Daily Show will air four shows from Charlotte, from Sept. 4-7. Tickets became available at 10:15 Monday morning, and were gone in just a few hours.