A completely renovated Allenberry Playhouse will open its door to a new era of theatrical entertainment when “Shrek the Musical” debuts at the Playhouse at Allenberry at 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 7.
Allenberry has been a Boiling Springs fixture since 1949. Its last show was offered in 2015, when the property was put up for sale.
The resort was purchased by Trinity MSB and is managed by Mike Kennedy, Molly Hoffman and Jim Hoffman, who have overseen an extensive renovation project and hired Keystone Theatrics as its production company.
“They’ve done beautiful renovation work on the entire property, including the playhouse, and now we’re ready to open for a new season at Allenberry,” said Dustin LeBlanc, executive director of Keystone Theatrics.
For LeBlanc, a native of Boiling Springs, working at Allenberry is a dream come true.
“Boiling Springs is my hometown, and it’s a dream come true to bring Allenberry back to life on a landmark property," he said.
According to LeBlanc, the new owners began work on the restaurants and lodging, many of which have already opened, and the playhouse, which is set to open July 7.
In addition to theatrical productions, the playhouse will also be used for events such as concerts, speakers and comedians.
“It’s a facility that can house a variety of programming and entertainment,” LeBlanc said.
He said he has heard nothing but good reviews from people who have stayed in the lodges (Pine Lodge, Stone Lodge and Meadow Lodge) and cottages, and dined in the Stone Lodge Tavern. People are also impressed with changes at the original mansion house, he said.
“The entire property needed upgrading, and they have basically renovated every building (on the property)," he said. "They really kept the tone of Allenberry but modernized it — made it nice and really fresh, given it a rustic feel with a modern kind of look.”
LeBlanc said openings are right around the corner for the main restaurant, the Barn, with outdoor seating overlooking the Yellow Breeches, and the Spa at Allenberry, which will be operated in Meadow Lodge by Changes, a local spa.
LeBlanc is certain that visitors will be equally impressed with Allenberry’s production of “Shrek the Musical.”
“We wanted to do a show that would set the tone for what people could expect at Allenberry,” he said. “With ‘Shrek,’ it’s a huge show with a colorful set, colorful costumes and great lighting. There are over 150 costumes for 23 actors.
“We wanted a show that would show off the changes at Allenberry, and ‘Shrek’ will be a great show to do that.”
LeBlanc said “Shrek the Musical” is something families can enjoy together.
“It’s not a kids’ show,” he said. “It’s a musical appropriate for all ages.”
And while children will certainly be entertained, adults will appreciate the play’s humor and story line, he said.
“It’s such a fun show,” LeBlanc said. “You can’t leave without smiling. The show is about storytelling. The season is about storytelling. We want to create memories and new stories about Allenberry.”
“Shrek the Musical” will run July 7-9, July 14-16 and July 20-22. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets can be purchased by calling the box office at 462-4401, or ordered online at www.allenberry.com or www.keystonetheatrics.com.
LeBlanc said the season will run through June 2018 and feature six main stage shows and three family series shows. The last production of the season will open Mother’s Day weekend