Press release from the Diana Wortham Theatre:
Wortham Center for the Performing Arts is now accepting inquiries for the use of its two newest performance spaces, the Tina McGuire Theatre and the Henry LaBrun Studio. These two spaces will be open and available for community use beginning September 2019.
Diana Wortham Theatre is in the midst of major change, transforming from a single-stage entity into Wortham Center for the Performing Arts, a three-venue, three-stage performing arts complex. Construction began in January 2019 and will complete by September 2019, at the start of the Wortham Center’s 2019/2020 Mainstage season.
The Wortham Center will comprise the existing Diana Wortham Theatre, the new Tina McGuire Theatre and the new Henry LaBrun Studio.
Upon opening, all three spaces will be available to rent for community events, from music and theater to workshops and conferences. These venues come performance-ready, equipped with professional lighting, seating and sound infrastructure, along with full use of the Wortham Center box office. Smaller than the Diana Wortham Theatre but larger than comparable local stages, the newest two spaces are available at an attainable price, with special discounted rates available to nonprofit organizations.
“We want to ensure that these spaces are accessible to everyone,” says Community Engagement Director Jared McEntire. “These are the same spaces, with the same professional infrastructure, that we offer to world-class artists during our Mainstage Season. It is our hope that local organizations will utilize these spaces to host successful events, interact with larger audiences and experience growth in new ways.”
The existing Diana Wortham Theatre is a world-class 500-seat performance venue with more than 25 years of experience in presenting the best in music, theatre and dance by nationally and internationally touring performing artists (the Mainstage Series); and is the home for more than 40 regional arts groups and organizations, which utilize the theatre to present performances and events to their constituencies. As part of the expansion, the Diana Wortham Theatre received upgrades to its sound system, with improved hearing assistance technology and energy-efficient LED lighting.
The Tina McGuire Theatre is the larger of the two new spaces. At 1,500 square feet, the multiuse black box performance space includes comfortable, convertible seating options for 80-100 people. It is ideal for professional music, comedy, theatre and dance performances due to its complex lighting and sound capabilities; immersive or experimental performance art; corporate or professional events, meetings or conferences with PowerPoint/presentation capabilities; community receptions; workshopping performances for larger stages; readings or storytelling. The Tina McGuire Theatre also comes equipped with dressing rooms and a green room for performers.
The Henry LaBrun Studio is a 1,075-square-foot performance space with comfortable, convertible seating options for 65-85 people. Originally envisioned to host classroom and workshop events for the Wortham Center’s Mainstage Series, this space is ideal for lectures, keynotes, storytelling, readings, cabaret-style events, yoga (or similar) classes, table tennis or other gaming tournaments, special screenings, educational events, youth and children’s events, intimate piano concerts, chamber music, acoustic music (due to the studio’s natural amplification) and community receptions. This space has its own lobby, giving it a private, intimate feel, separate from the rest of the Wortham Center. It also has access to a private, “VIP” breakout area, with access to a prep-kitchen for caterers.
Each of the three spaces will have access to the Wortham Center courtyard, lobby, box office, lounge and concession area — and all three stages have professionally sprung dance floors. The Wortham Center’s professional lighting and sound staff are available upon request for an hourly fee.
Inquiries can be made for one venue, multiple venues or for the entire Wortham Center.
“Once all three venues are open, we can technically have three different events by three different organizations all happening at the same time,” McEntire says. “Or an entity could also rent out the entire Wortham Center for the Performing Arts and have their own festival all under one roof. Because of the dynamic nature of the newly expanded Wortham Center, we invite anyone with an event in mind to get in touch to discuss how we can make this versatile space work for you.”
The Wortham Center for the Performing Arts will officially open in September 2019 at 18 Biltmore Avenue. Individuals or organizations interested in booking any portion of the center for a future event should contact Operations Manager Tiffany Santiago at 828-210-9850 or firstname.lastname@example.org.