“The design of the new Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater was inspired by the vision of Molly Smith, Arena’s Artistic Director, for a theatre for all that is passionate, exuberant, profound, deep and dangerous in the American spirit. Building on Arena’s illustrious history and close relationship with the SW Washington community, the reinvented Arena Stage effectively doubles the facility allow for state-of-the-art technology and modern amenities. It includes: spacious workspaces for rehearsals, set designs and construction; class rooms for education programs; expanded office space; community gathering spaces; a spacious centralized lobby, box office, and concessions; underground parking; and the restoration and preservation of the two existing historic theatres, the Fichandler, Arena’s original theatre-in-the-round, and the Kreeger Theater. In addition, a new 200-seat experimental theatre, the Kogod Cradle, supports the creation and production of new American plans.
A dramatic roof and glass structure encompass the three theatres and offer views of the adjacent Washington Channel and Washington Monument. Through careful site design and bold sculpting of the structures, a renewed image for the neighbourhood has been created that fosters public activities in and around the buildings. The project has been a catalyst in the community spurring redevelopment of the surrounding areas.”
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