The Valley Performing Arts Center (VPAC) will provide students with state-of-the-art academic facilities.
Robert Bucker, dean of the Mike Curb College of Arts, Media, and Communication said the VPAC not only is a milestone for the San Fernando Valley community but it will also be beneficial on an academic level (for students).
The structure serves as an academic site with a lecture hall, faculty offices and designated space for the campus radio station KCSN.
“There will be opportunities for students to perform in the hall,” Bucker said, referring to the 175-seat black box theatre. “I want to make it clear that there will be a lot of student work going on.”
After almost three years of construction, the center will open on Jan. 29, 2011.
Bucker guided members of the press on a tour of the VPAC on Wednesday, Aug. 18. Along with its main concert hall, the tour included the VPAC’s studio theatre and rehearsal rooms.
Gailya Brown, the senior director of the VPAC campaign was also present at the tour.
“It’s such an asset to the campus (the VPAC),” Brown said. “The students will benefit in so many ways.”
The lecture hall in the VPAC will not be designated to those in the performing arts field. Multiple departments will utilize the hall, Bucker said.
Brown agreed that the lecture hall in particular would assist in creating a relationship between the students and faculty.
The center will not only benefit students academically but it will also create jobs for them, Bucker said.
“There will be many students who will work in this space,” he said. “They will work for the corporation and concessions, they will work as ushers.”
According to the project description flyer distributed by The Hoyt Organization, a public relations company, the facility cost about $100 million in construction alone with the project as a whole totaling $125 million.
The public relations company represents HGA Architects and Engineers, the construction company recruited to making the five-story facility a reality.
Brown said the construction of this “very exciting space” was possible due to a combination of public and private funding.
“In addition to the state funding there’s some municipal funding, some county money, and also the facility has been fundraised for,” Bucker said.
The ending result is a 166,000 square foot complex that will be one of the three major performance halls in Southern California rivaled only by the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and the Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa, according to Hoyt’s project description.
Sam Huleis, the senior project manager for C.W. Driver, the company building VPAC, said this particular structure is unique not only because of its size and capacity but because of the flexibility and diversity of the theater.
The U-shaped performance center will cater to various types of performances due to its advanced acoustics and tuning components that offer audiences an exceptional entertainment experience.
“The theater is designed with the capability of adjusting to many types of performances,” Huleis said. These performances include opera, Broadway, and ballet.
Construction on the new VPAC is scheduled to end in October of this year, he added.