Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts
The Maxwell and Ruth Belding Theater 2001
Client:The Bushnell Theatre
Project Category:Performing Arts Centers
Architect:Wilson Butler Architects
Completion Year:2001
Location:Hartford, Connecticut
Acoustician:Jaffe Holden Acoustics
Capacity:907 seats
One of Connecticut's premier performing arts centers, the Bushnell Center has a 70 year history. Since 1930, many of the world's most talented singers, dancers and actors - such as Pavarotti, Baryshnikov, Katherine Hepburn and Judy Garland - have performed on its stage.

The Belding Theater was added to the Bushnell Center in in 2001.  FDA contributed both to the planning and design of this new, state-of-the-art performance hall. A planning study confirmed the need for an expanded venue, and the resulting expansion added a 900-seat theater to the historic 2,000 seat Art Deco-style auditorium. The new theatre has a stage house 92-foot-wide and 42-foot-deep; beautifully designed orchestra, mezzanine and private box seating, and expanded and enhanced patron and performer amenities.

Other features include a new rehearsal hall that holds special events, VIP patron lounges, and significantly expanded lobbies and restrooms.  This new, smaller stage provides local organizations with a high-quality facility for a diverse range of arts and community presentations, and frees approximately 25 dates in the larger hall by transferring programming better suited to presentation in a smaller facility.  

The Bushnell
2002 AIA New England Design Award