Louisiana State University Music & Dramatic Arts Building

Louisiana State University’s original Italian Renaissance-inspired Music & Dramatic Arts Facility was built in 1932 and is recognized by the State Register of Historic Places. While beautiful and brimming with history, the campus landmark lacked the amenities necessary to support modern music and theater programs. Additionally, the facility’s common areas were substandard both in terms of function and safety.

In response, the design team of Grace Hebert Curtis Architects and Tipton Associates transformed the structure and gave performance spaces a significant overhaul — and addressed the need for new classrooms, faculty offices, research rooms, libraries and storage spaces.

Grace Hebert Curtis Architects’ final design brought clarity to the building’s circulation and visual balance to a discordant series of prior additions and improvements. The solution restored and enhanced the distinctive Art Deco elements of the original 400-seat proscenium theatre and main lobby. It also overhauled the building’s obsolete infrastructure while working within the boundaries of a very restricted site and budget.

Project Size: 112,335 square feet

Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Completed: 2009

Creative Interior Design

The project was primarily focused on interior renovations, but also included exterior repairs with regard to egress and life safety issues, which were addressed in an unobtrusive manner to maintain the building’s character.

State-of-the-art Design

Introducing new, state-of-the-art classrooms and practice facilities enriched academic activities.

Ideal Arrangement

Extensive programming exercises with the client resulted in the ideal arrangement of new classrooms, offices, faculty studios, rehearsal spaces, practice rooms and storage.

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