My successes. 

"Charles Bach Wonders has performed for audiences all over the world including performances at the Magic Castle in Hollywood and Branson. We have also been seen on the E! Entertainment Channel, the Discovery Channel, and the Food Network in addition to other appearances on international TV around the world. Our fans give us raving reviews on all of our social media platforms."

What do you do? 

When Charles Bach waves his magic wand, his Myrtle Beach, SC theater transforms into a magical world filled with joy, wonder, and breath-taking surprises. The Charles Bach Wonders Theatre mesmerizes audiences with world-class magic and illusion shows that combine magic, dance, comedy, and puppetry with theatrical staging. The Charles Bach Wonders Theatre is conveniently located on Myrtle Beach's Broadway at the Beach, a popular travel destination for all ages offering live entertainment, excellent dining, thriving shops, and eventful nightlife.

Charles shares more about the thrilling experience his theater offers, "Charles Bach Wonders Theatre produces high-quality, five-star entertainment in a mid-sized venue creating an experience all audiences will forever remember. Our magical experience is for the whole family. Our performances are fun, mystical, and amazing. Our audiences are fully absorbed in our performance as they see, hear, and even feel the magic in their own seats."

What inspired you to start your business? 

Charles' passion for magic and theater started when he was a just small boy. At age 8, Charles first started performing magic and began building creative sets out of cardboard. Charles elaborates, "After my uncle showed me a card trick, I learned how to do it and performed the trick the next day for my family. As I continued to learn more magic, my major influences became Doug Henning, a Broadway magic star, and Jim Henson, creator of The Muppets. Each of them used color, lighting, costumes, music, and humor in tandem with the magic and the puppetry. That's what got me into the entertainment business and influenced me to offer the type of performances we deliver today."

What have you learned from your experiences as a business owner? 

Charles BachCharles earned his BFA from the University of Iowa and spent years performing with numerous ballet companies, modern dance companies, and production shows. Charles first started performing his artistry as a business owner when he signed a 6-month independent contract with a magical themed dinner show at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, NV. The 6-month contract evolved into a 4.5-year residency enabling Charles to perfect his abilities over thousands of shows. Charles' residency led to performance opportunities on cruise ships, theme parks, and theaters throughout the world in 55 different countries creating exposure internationally and on national television. Charles has appeared on the hit show Penn & Teller Fool Us and has performed for Hollywood's Magic Castle.

Charles explains how these opportunities ultimately prepared him for business ownership, "Being able to observe successful operations while working as a contracted entertainer allowed me to gain the invaluable experience I needed to prepare for producing and operating my own theater. What a rush of energy I receive when guests come to our theater, purchase souvenirs, and appreciate what we do! It makes the days move fast and gives me a burst of joy waking up each morning to perform."

What influenced you to seek help from SCORE? 

When Charles and his wife welcomed their first child, the Bach family enjoyed traveling together sharing international experiences. As their child grew to become school-aged, Charles started traveling alone and knew during his first trip away that he needed to launch his own theater. While Charles' skillfully mastered acts were becoming increasingly famous, he realized that effective business planning and a smart marketing strategy would be critical for sustainable success as an owner and operator of his own theater. In 2018, Charles contacted SCORE Grand Strand, seeking free mentoring expertise to develop a business plan and a marketing plan. Jim Helfgott, SCORE Mentor and Grand Strand Chapter Chair, was assigned to help Charles.

How SCORE helped. 

Jim's efforts in helping Charles resulted in the greatest adjustments Charles has made to his business to date. Charles explains, "I started to value the marketing aspects of the business so much more and the value of tracking results through online tools, guest questionnaires, and A/B testing methodologies. Social media was also a learning curve that has made a huge difference in my reach in a cost-efficient approach. As my SCORE Mentor said, 'There's a lot of ways to spend a lot of money on marketing.' Learning what works for us, eliminating wasteful marketing channels, and dedicating our limited resources to the right places have been my biggest adaptations. I'm grateful for all of Jim's advice, his genuine care for our success, and our long-term mentoring relationship."

What Charles did not anticipate when launching his business was the necessity to develop a contingency plan for managing his entertainment business through a global pandemic. Charles says, "Unfortunately, we had to close our shows for the remainder of 2020. We are using this time wisely by creating a new and amazing show for 2021 which I cannot wait until we start performing! The safety of our guests and staff members are of utmost importance. Once the pandemic ends, I plan to grow the theater, offer more shows, and increase the length of our performance season."

What's great about my mentor? 

"My SCORE Mentor, Jim Helfgott, was instrumental in helping narrow down all the marketing options into an effective plan. Jim helped me strategize growth opportunities, develop clear and fun marketing messaging and materials, and create a long-term business plan. Jim also provides great advice during challenging times."

What would you tell a fellow business owner about SCORE? 

Sharing what he has learned as an entrepreneur, Charles offers the following business advice to other small business owners regardless of industry, "Be open to adapting. In addition to the pandemic, we have had several unexpected challenges over the years. We have dealt with power outages, broken elevators, and burning popcorn. We even had non-customers enter our theater and damage our restrooms. I can look back now and laugh, but at the time these events were dreadful."

Charles continues by sharing what he considers to be probably the best advice he ever received, "Trust your instincts and stay true to your brand. When you launch your business, form partnerships with as many local businesses as you can and identify ways in how you can support each other. Trust what you know and don't be afraid to seek out help with uncertain areas of your business."

Charles Bach Wonders

My Mentors