As a lover of the arts, of course I jumped at the opportunity to tour the new Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts that is currently under construction. Let me just say, this place is impressive. Phase One of this 330,000-square-foot facility in downtown Orlando will house two performance theaters, a community theater, an outdoor plaza and performance space, and classrooms. Not only is the building plan amazing, but I was so impressed with the story that our tour guide weaved for us as we wandered along to many key areas. The phrase that kept coming up was, “Arts for Every Life,” and the tour guide emphasized how much that went into designing this building. The Dr. Phillips Center’s team really wants every walk of life to feel comfortable going into this venue. This means if someone is coming to a casual hip hop concert in the Alexis and Jim Pugh Theater (which seats 300) in a t-shirt and jeans, that same night they could also run into someone in more formal attire heading to a Broadway musical in the Walt Disney Theater (seats 2,700). There are several intentional shared spaces in this building including the lobby and grand staircase (and when I say grand, I mean gr-a-n-n-n-n-d). Personally, I love this. The emphasis on community and giving everyone accessibly to the arts is a beautiful perspective for Orlando to continue evolving towards.
Doesn’t this sound awesome? And guess what? That’s just Phase One! They are also working to put in an Acoustical Theater (seats 1,700) that will have some really neat features to accommodate anything from a symphony to an opera to a ballet. And there will also be an outside venue area as well. Come November 2014 (anticipated opening), you can bet I will be buying a ticket to something and it’s wonderful thinking there will be so many options! It truly is Arts for Every Life!
Sad you didn’t get to come on the tour? Check out this fly-through video for a peek! http://www.drphillipscenter.org/explore/fly-through/