South Charlotte

Charlotte Christian School embarks on $8M expansion

Leaders in the new Worship and Performing Arts Center at Charlotte Christian school break ground for the 21,000 square foot facility, which will include an auditorium and space to display visual art.
Leaders in the new Worship and Performing Arts Center at Charlotte Christian school break ground for the 21,000 square foot facility, which will include an auditorium and space to display visual art. Charlotte Christian School

Charlotte Christian School continues to build out its campus, breaking ground on a new worship and performing arts center just two years after opening its Hendrick Center for Arts and Science.

“Our families remain committed to our mission and desire to support the campus expansion and development,” said Barry Giller, CCS head of school.

The Center for Worship and Performing Arts is part of the school’s strategic plan, which was developed in 2011. The two-story, 21,000-square-foot building will contain a 520-seat auditorium, a black-box theater, a scene shop and dressing rooms for student performers. There also will be space for visual arts students to display their projects.

The center will be built directly behind the Hendrick Center for Arts and Science, which faces Sardis Road. Construction begins in December and should be completed by the fall of 2017.

The building will cost about $8 million, which is being raised in a funding campaign, according to the school.

Rick and Linda Hendrick are the lead donors. Three of their grandchildren attend the school.

CCS plans to hold its weekly chapels in the new auditorium — now, the gatherings are held in the Lamb Johnson Gym, the school’s main gym. The Center for Worship and Fine Arts will be the school’s first auditorium, which will relieve the gym of hosting of plays, concerts, chapels, assemblies and other large events, which it has done for almost 40 years.

“Students will appreciate having a dedicated space for worship and a more intimate environment as we open God’s word,” Giller said. “All of our plays, musicals and concerts will now be in a professional setting with fantastic acoustics, amazing technology and all the support structures a stellar fine arts program deserves.”

Arts classes have classroom space on campus, including a band studio, choir room and rehearsal studio.

Charlotte Christian’s arts programs and students regularly recognized for excellence. The school offers 38 fine arts classes, including choir, broadcasting, orchestra and drama, and it produces musical each year involving students of all ages.

The performing arts program has received 24 Wells Fargo Blumey Award nominations for upper school musicals since the award began in 2012, and it has won five. Theater students also have won honors at the Wingate Shakespeare Festival, the North Carolina Theatre Competition Christians in Theatre Arts competitions.

For the second consecutive capital project at Charlotte Christian School, Rick and Linda Hendrick are the lead donors. Three of their grandchildren attend the school.

Rick Hendrick, owner of the Hendrick Motorsports team, said he and his wife recently attended a play at CCS that his granddaughter was in.

“They work so hard to tear down the gym and rearrange things to have plays,” Hendrick said. “They should have the facilities that all the other schools have.

“We just love the school,” he added. “We have never felt so strongly about our foundation for our family and our grandkids.”

Charlotte Christian opened in 1950, and Giller said the school is at capacity in most grade levels because of “the board’s steadfastness in pursuing the mission of the school.

“Our students and families value the passion and commitment of our teachers, the Christ-centered commitment of the school and the balance that is offered to each student as they pursue to hone their academic, fine arts and athletic talents.”

The school has more development plans in the works, including work on the northern part of its 55-acre campus. Additions will include a new athletic center, tennis courts and more competition fields for soccer and lacrosse.

Marty Minchin is a freelance writer: martyminchin@gmail.com.

Learn more

For information about Charlotte Christian School, visit www.charlottechristian.com.

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