USITT Announces 2013 Architecture Award Winners

Garsington Opera PavillionUSITT, the United States Institute for Theatre Technology, will recognize five new performance spaces – three in the U.S. and two in Europe -- with its 2013 Architecture Merit Awards, USITT Executive Director David Grindle announced Monday.

USITT, the professional association serving the performing arts and entertainment design and technology industry, will present the awards at its 2013 Annual Conference & Stage Expo in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, next March 20-23.

Two university performing arts centers, a national parks visitor center, a British opera space and an arts complex in Norway will receive Merit Awards in Architecture, Grindle said. The projects were chosen by a three-member jury from 28 submissions this year. No submissions were chosen for the higher category of Honor Awards this year.

The Merit Award recipients of 2013 are:

• Valley Performing Arts Center (VPAC) at California State University in Northridge, California. Designed by HGA Architects and Engineers, the $125 million soaring glass arts complex, with its signature cantilevered roof and reflecting pool, houses two performance halls and was completed in January 2011.

• Wagner Noȅl Performing Arts Center, at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin in Midland, Texas. The sweeping stone building, reminiscent of Pueblo cliff dwellings, was designed by BOORA Architects and completed in November 2011 for $65 million.

• Kilden Performing Arts Centre in Kristiansand, Norway. The monumental wood and glass structure gracing the city’s old harbor was designed by the young Finnish ALA Architects Ltd., and completed in October 2011 at a cost of $277 million ($1.6 billion Norwegian Kroner).

• Rosie the Riveter Visitor and Education Center at the World War II Home Front National Historic Park in Richmond, California. Marcy Wong Donn Logan Architects designed this restoration of a former Ford auto factory to house a museum, theatre and exhibits commemorating women workers who built tanks there during WWII. The project reportedly cost $7 million and opened in May.

• Garsington Opera Pavilion on the Wormsley Estate in Stokenchurch, High Wycombe, United Kingdom. The elegant, Japanese-inspired pavilion was designed by Robin Snell of Snell Associates to be put up and dismantled each season. It was finished in May at a cost of $2.8 million (1.8 million British pounds).

USITT’s Architecture Awards are chosen based on creativity, contextual resonance, functional operation, use of new technology and community contribution. Each project will be represented in a special exhibit at USITT’s 2013 Stage Expo, where an awards reception will be held in their honor.

USITT’s Architecture Commission sponsors the awards, which are chosen by a panel that recommends them to the Board of Directors for final approval. The panel for the 2013 awards included Chicago-based Theatre Designer Robert Shook of Schuler Shook, Dawn Schuette, architect and designer with Threshold Acoustics in Chicago, and Architect Timothy Hartung of Ennead Architects in New York.

Timothy Hartung also will be honored at the 2013 Annual Conference with the USITT Distinguished Achievement in Architecture award, and will participate in a roundtable discussion with all USITT’s distinguished award recipients.

To learn more about the exciting activities at the 2013 USITT Annual Conference & Stage Expo, visit the website.

For more information about USITT’s programs and services, please visit www.usitt.org .

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