Children’s Theatre of Charlotte Breaks Into TV with Extreme Makeover: Home Edition

by Jacob Coakley


The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte crew talking with the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition crew
The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte crew talking with the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition crew

Children’s Theatre of Charlotte took the opportunity to move from building for the stage to building in real life when approached by the TV Show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. Technical Director Andrew Gibbon and Scenic Artist Tim Parati designed bedrooms for two Charlotte children based on their desires, while the whole CTC staff was involved in some way with the build. The episode will be broadcast on Monday, Dec. 10 at 8 p.m. on ABC affiliates.


CHARLOTTE, NC – Set design, building and installation is standard fare at Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, with this part of the creative process helping bring stories to life on stage. Last year, however, the team was involved in a very different creative process: the design, build and installation of two children’s bedrooms in the local “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” home built in Lincolnton.

The episode, with a holiday theme, airs at 8 p.m. on Dec. 10 on ABC.

“EM:HE” contacted the Theatre in early November 2011 with an invitation to participate. Though schedules were jammed full with crafting two CTC productions, the team was eager to take on the challenge, viewing it as a way to be part of a larger community effort.

Technical Director Andrew Gibbon and Scenic Artist Tim Parati took on the task of designing the rooms to fulfill the wishes of the two young soon-to-be residents of the home. Their designs were approved by the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition partner designers and producers.

The film crew spent an afternoon on-site with Children’s Theatre during the construction process, capturing footage to utilize in the upcoming episode. The Theatre and “EM:HE” also had an opportunity to work with an iconic children’s literature foundation to coordinate the representation of one of the themed rooms with the brand guide of the author.

Nearly every staffer at Children’s Theatre had an opportunity to participate in some way, be it painting, picking up supplies, loading the truck or just providing encouragement and support.

Joining hundreds of other volunteers at the home site, the two bedrooms were completed and installed in time to be revealed to the family as part of the taping for the show.

Children’s Theatre of Charlotte is a national leader among theatres for young audiences, serving more than 300,000 young people and families annually with professional productions and innovative education initiatives.

Children’s Theatre of Charlotte is supported, in part, with an Operating Grant from the Arts & Science Council, Charlotte-Mecklenburg, Inc. and the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources.

For more info about Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, please visit