Looking for Tenders

Article

New theatre will revitalize Cambridge riverfront

0 56 Home

One of the largest performing arts companies in Canada, Drayton Entertainment, has opened a cultural hub and 500-seat theatre here. The Dunfield Theatre consolidates the company’s operations under one roof and revitalizes the riverfront district of Cambridge.
New theatre will revitalize Cambridge riverfront

CAMBRIDGE, ONT.

One of the largest performing arts companies in Canada, Drayton Entertainment, has opened a cultural hub and 500-seat theatre here. The Dunfield Theatre consolidates the company’s operations under one roof and revitalizes the riverfront district of Cambridge.

A design team led by Gary McCluskie, principal with Diamond Schmitt Architects, created a limestone, metal and glass structure that reflects the former industrial heritage of the neighnourhood.

The firm said the volumes of the building act as a series of progressions to capitalize on the natural slope of the site and provide enhanced functionality to a large back-of-house program.

There are five multi-purpose rehearsal stages plus wardrobe and set design, administrative offices for 60 people and living accommodations for 33 artists.

“As the creative centre for all of Drayton’s shows at different stages of production, rehearsal and performance, this versatile facility creates a strong sense of theatre community and creativity,” said McCluskie, whose previous performing arts projects include Maison Symphonique in Montreal and the Burlington Performing Arts Centre.

The 53,500-square-footfacility was built for $14 million. The project team included Melloul-Blamey Construction, structural engineering consultants Yolles, a CH2M HILL company, and mechanical-electrical consultants Crossey Engineering Ltd.

Diamond Schmitt said the auditorium is designed for intimacy and spectator engagement with only 62 feet separating the stage from the last row in the 80-seat balcony. The firm configured the acoustics for the amplified room, which has a large wood-lined proscenium.

“This is not only a facility for Drayton to grow into but also to accommodate other types of performance and be accessible to the community, where a symphony can perform and local theatre groups can rehearse and build their sets,” said Steven Karcher, executive director with Drayton Entertainment.

Ample public amenity space includes a double-height lobby that overlooks a large forecourt and a second-floor event room for 80 people that can be booked along with the balcony for private functions.

The third floor dormitory-style accommodation has pods of four to six single bedrooms around a common room and kitchen. Loading docks have direct access to both stage level and the second floor workshops.

“This is a unique complex, there’s nothing else quite like this,” Karcher said.

Follow @DCN_Canada on Twitter for more construction news and updates.

by Dcn News Services

Leave a comment

Or register to be able to comment.