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Columbia entertainment group in columbia, missouri


Business: Columbia Entertainment Company

Industry: Theatre and Entertainment

Socket Services: 2 Basic Voice Lines, 100M/10M Fiber Data Service

Location: Columbia, Missouri

Website: cectheatre.org

Socket Business Account Representative: Aaron Hayes


It’s a historic year for the Columbia Entertainment Company (CEC) as they celebrate 30 years of being at their current facility in Columbia. It’s their 43rd season, opening with Hedwig and The Angry Inch. Their mission is to enrich the community by providing quality live theatre experiences to the citizens of mid-Missouri through education and participation. Their goals include expanding the opportunity for people of all ages and backgrounds to receive training in live theatre and serving as a venue for the presentation of a wide range of live theatre productions. CEC has been live since 1978 and has produced over 290 productions!

CEC had been debating about switching to Socket for a few years. They knew Socket was local, but their Internet Service Provider (ISP) at the time wasn’t horrible, nor was it super great. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Enola-Riann White, MPA, Executive Director at CEC, says that’s when they began to notice a big problem with their ISP. “We had to pivot. We couldn’t do live, in-person productions anymore and had to switch to live stream productions. Our internet couldn’t handle it, and our provider was not cost-effective.” With live streams that can have 140 views or more in one night, it was crucial that CEC find a better ISP.

One call to Socket was all it took for CEC to make the switch. “Socket was fast, cost-effective, met our needs, and we’ve gotten many compliments on the quality of our live stream” says White. They are now able to offer Wi-Fi in their building again, as their previous internet wasn’t stable enough for multiple people to be using it at a time. Now, there can be multiple devices without a hitch and their phone service has greatly improved.

White says CEC enjoys working with a local ISP because of quick communication and wishes they would have made the switch sooner. “I know I can email Aaron and say ‘hey, we have a live stream, and it looks like we have a lot of traffic, can we boost our speed?’ and Aaron is so quick! I wish we would have switched sooner; I don’t know why we were dragging our feet.”