Charleston has a new performing arts center befitting the #1 travel destination in the world. The exquisite new Gaillard Center features a state-of-the-art performance hall, exhibition and event space, plus 11,000 square feet of green space, rooms for arts education, and municipal offices.
At $142 million, the new Gaillard Center is the most expensive municipal project in Charleston’s 350-year history. It replaced the city’s aging Galliard Municipal Auditorium.
The original Gaillard, at 77 Calhoun St., was built in 1968 for $6 million (equivalent to about $40 million today), and sparked controversy because of its impact on the surrounding low-income neighborhood.
Named for four-term mayor J. Palmer Gaillard, the original structure was designed for a sleepy Southern town struggling with a painful racial history, not for the world-class city that Charleston has become.
A gorgeous neo-classical edifice, the Gaillard features magnificent acoustics in the main performance hall. It was conceived as a world-class performing arts center in the tradition of Europe’s great performance halls.
Concerts as varied as acoustic country, Celtic women, doo-wop, Arturo Sandoval jazz, a tribute to the Beatles and the Charleston Symphony Orchestra have been among the first to grace its stage.
Check out the beautiful new Gaillard Center on your next visit to Charleston.