The Center For The Performing Arts in Carmel, IN is scheduled to open on January 29, 2011, featuring four state-of-the-art performing arts venues: The Palladium, a 1,600-seat concert hall; a 500-seat proscenium theater (The Tarkington); a 200-seat studio theater; and an outdoor amphitheater. The architects and consultants for the project include David M. Schwarz/Architectural Services, Inc.—David M. Schwarz principal—as design architects, Artec Consultants Inc —Damian Doria principal—for acoustics and theatre planning, and Indiana-based CSO Schenkel Schultz as architect of record. Architectural lighting will be provided by SBLD Studio.

Former managing director of the Tony Award-winning La Jolla Playhouse, Steven Libman, joined the Center as its first executive director in September of 2009, along with Michael Feinstein, the multi-platinum, five-time Grammy nominee, who assumed his position as artistic director at the same time. Feinstein, a world-famous singer, songwriter and pianist, is considered one of the premiere interpreters of American Popular Song, and is the owner of the Great American Songbook Collection, which will be housed in the Center. Libman and Feinstein co-hosted an event at Feinstein’s at the Loews Regency Hotel in New York on June 17 to present the Center.

Conceived as the future home of the Civic Theatre, the Carmel Symphony Orchestra, Carmel’s Actors Theatre of Indiana, Carmel Repertory Theatre, Central, Indiana Dance Ensemble, and the Gregory Hancock Dance Theatre, the Center For The Performing Arts will feature programming such as a Great American Songbook Series, jazz, dance, classical and country music concerts, as well as appearances by world-famous symphonies, singers and musicians. A variety of plays and musicals, intimate cabaret performances, appearances by America’s favorite comedians and a multitude of other unique entertainment options will be presented. The Palladium also will host an annual international Great American Songbook Festival.

Dubbed The Palladium, the 1,600-seat concert hall at the Center for the Performing Arts was so named in keeping with what Libman calls the “architectural magnificence of the building’s design,” which was inspired by a villa designed by Andrea Palladio. Built in the 1500’s near Vicenza, Italy, the villa, known as “La Rotunda,” remains an architectural icon nearly 500 years later. The concert hall will house an adjustable canopy system made of space framing and large, thick shapes of glass for superior sound. Other features contributing to the high-quality acoustics and audience accommodations include:

— A “single room” design that places performers and audience in the same place.
— A traditional “shoe box” shape, with high ceilings and massive, sound-reflecting walls.
— Surface detailing that creates sound reflection at different frequencies.
– Audience seating behind the performance platform.
— Narrow side ledges for great sightlines.

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