The Lory Student Center Theater is set to reopen after more than a year’s worth of construction and renovations. To showcase the new theater, the Resonant RAMblings—CSU’s a cappella group—will be putting on a show. Following that will be a showing of The Avengers.
The renovations to the theater cost $6 million –– about a tenth of the estimated $65 million price tag to renovate the rest of the LSC.
The $6 million was not part of students fees, but was instead raised by the theater. Compared to the rest of the LSC, $60 million will come from student fees while the remaining $5 million will come from fundraising efforts.
“The theater is part of the overall changes to the LSC, but is a different project initially,” Tony Pang, assistant director for the LSC, said. “It allowed us to start early and to do some things on a smaller scale before we put them into the rest of the LSC.”
The new theater has been upgraded to be able to change its layout to accommodate many different types of events, not just events that use traditional theater seating.
“The theater now has universal access with a completely flat floor and can be reconfigured for a variety of events with its state-of-the-art moveable seating system,” Pang said. “The theater can be oriented in many different ways and performances no longer have to be unidirectional.”
According to Allison Welter, the LSC Colab Copywriter, incorporating old design elements—like the beam that many students signed last November—was a key element in redesigning the theater.
“Maintaining the important history of the venue, its overall design scheme, and incorporating old pieces in modern design are all concepts the LSC plans on continuing throughout the building,” Welter said.
The new renovations allow the theatre to hold about 500 people; 50 less than the University Center for the Arts’ Griffin Hall.
The theater was updated to bring back traditional and non-traditional events to the LSC.
“With the development of other venues in town, such as the University Center for the Arts and the Lincoln Center, a large number of traditional theater performances were moved away from the LSC Theater,” Pang said.
To try and bring them back to the LSC, the improvements are taking a technological approach.
The new seating is a state-of-the-art design that can be fully retracted to leave the floor completely open, making the space ideal for concerts or other gatherings.
Another one of the new specs is the balcony that will go all the way around the top of the event space.
“As the theater was redesigned, the LSC tried to allow for as much flexibility as possible so that the space could be used for things that students haven’t even been able to think of today,” Pang said.
Mike Ellis, executive director of the LSC, feels that the LSC will continue to be a staple of CSU culture.
“The LSC theatre has a rich and storied history in hosting a variety of arts programs for CSU and Fort Collins, and while its role and purpose has changed in responding to students’ needs, it will continue to serve our community in important ways by serving as a gathering place for campus celebrations, programs and events.”
Entertainment Reporter Marcus Moritz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org