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Dalhousie University welcomes Premier Stephen McNeil for $10 million Dalhousie Arts Centre funding announcement

Posted by Media Centre on September 19, 2018 in News

Today Dalhousie University welcomed Premier Stephen McNeil to campus, where he announced a $10 million investment as part of the university’s $38.5-million Performing Arts Campaign to revitalize and expand the Dalhousie Arts Centre.

“Investments in culture and the arts support Nova Scotia’s diversity and heritage, bringing communities together and helping grow the economy,” says Premier Stephen McNeil. “The Dalhousie Arts Centre plays a vital role as a cultural hub. As government, we are pleased to contribute to the centre’s expansion and rejuvenation, which will benefit students, performers and patrons.”

“We thank Premier McNeil and the Government of Nova Scotia for this generous contribution,” says Dalhousie President Richard Florizone. “In an age of technological advances, it is the skills that make us most human that will be more important than ever. These enhancements to the Arts Centre will support our students in the Fountain School of Performing Arts, expand the impact of academic programs and strengthen the environment for creativity and performance in the Maritimes for generations to come.”

The Dalhousie Arts Centre is home to the Fountain School of the Performing Arts, which offers programs in Music, Theatre, Cinema and Media Studies, and Costume Studies. Students will benefit from the new practice and rehearsal spaces for voice, music and theatre, modern costume studies studios, state-of-the-art acoustics design and other upgrades.

“The expansion will bring all the Fountain School’s programs under one roof, including the Costume Studies program, which is now located across campus,” says Jacqueline Warwick, director of the Fountain School of Performing Arts. “The new teaching and performance spaces will enable more cross-disciplinary learning, collaboration, and exploration, and the Joseph Strug Concert Hall will be a beautiful new venue for them to perform in. The new rehearsal spaces and practice rooms will allow students to challenge themselves, take risks, and reach their creative potential.”

Keith Tufts from Lydon Lynch in Halifax and Thomas Payne of Toronto are the lead architects on the project. A key feature of the project is a new world-class, 300-seat concert hall that will serve as a critical resource for Dalhousie students and the entire community to experience exceptional performances. The Joseph Strug Concert Hall will feature acoustics designed by Rick Talaske of The Talaske Group Inc., one of the top acoustic engineers in the field. The new concert hall will expand the cultural offerings in the city, attracting patrons and artists. The campaign will also support much-needed enhancements to the almost 50-year-old Arts Centre, including environmental upgrades to provide improved air quality and energy savings, and improvements to accessibility gained from updating the building.

“This is a happy day for the arts community here in Nova Scotia,” says Campaign Chair Rob Steele. “This revitalization will enable Nova Scotia to create a new standard of excellence in performing arts education and will support more artists in the region.”

The university is pleased to acknowledge the leadership of Rob Steele as Campaign Chair of the Performing Arts Campaign. Dalhousie is continuing to draw on support for the $38.5-million Performing Arts Campaign, which includes the $10M investment from the Nova Scotia Government, as well as financial support from donors, alumni and the arts community.

“We recognize the Government of Nova Scotia, and the continued support of the arts community and our donors in making this project a reality,” says President Florizone. “These new rehearsal and performance spaces will be an invaluable resource for community organizations, festivals and artists, as well as for our students and campus community.” 

Dalhousie University is especially proud that this announcement is taking place during our 200th anniversary year as we continue to celebrate 200 years of leadership, inspiration and impact.


Media Contact:
Janet Bryson
Dalhousie University










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