Projects   Building Types Study - Performing Arts
----- Advertising -----
----- Advertising -----
Sweets, Search Building Products

Donna and Marvin Schwartz Center for Performing Arts
Michael Dennis & Associates / Howard-Montgomery-Steger / Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart

A concert hall that combines modern acoustics with historic influences

© Paul Warchol

For more photos click on 'photos & drawings' above.

To see the people and products behind this project click on 'people & products.'

The Schwartz Center for Performing Arts accommodates Emory University's music, theater, and dance programs. The building is composed of an 830-seat concert hall, a 135-seat dance performance hall, a 135-seat lab theater, a rehearsal hall, music practice rooms, faculty offices, and performance lobbies. It is designed to contribute to a "village of the arts," a vision for the university’s arts program centered around a future arts commons, which will be the center of academic life for arts students and faculty.

The main hall, Emerson Concert Hall, is located at the south end of the building and its lobby faces outward to establish a public presence on the primary street bordering the campus. Symphony Hall in Boston and the Vienna Grosser Musikvereinssall were studied extensively as precedents for the concert hall design. Additionally, the hall reflects the tradition of shoebox concert halls, featuring tall narrow proportions with the stage inside the main volume. Raised seating behind the stage accommodates choral performers or general seating. Clerestory windows allow natural light into the space.

To achieve acoustic requirements, the architects used concrete ceiling panels and acoustical banners. The motorized acoustical banners at the clerestory windows and in the precast concrete ceiling vary the acoustic reverberation time to allow the concert hall to be tuned to specific performance requirements. A retractable acoustic curtain concealed behind the stage aids in refining reverberation time at the performance level.

In addition to specialized acoustics, the center features sustainable devices. An air displacement system under the seating provides conditioned air directly at this level while decreasing cooling loads. Energy efficient glazing provides extensive natural light throughout the lobbies and concert hall.

Formal name of Project:
The Donna and Marvin Schwartz Center for Performing Arts


Gross square footage:
90,625 sq. ft.

Total construction cost:
$29 million

Emory University

Michael Dennis & Associates
36 Bromfield Street
Boston, Massachusetts
P 617.338.8713
F 617.338.6375

1515 Poydras Street, Suite 2680
New Orleans, LA 70112
P 504.636.3434
F 504.636.3435

Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart
3565 Piedmont Road, Suite 303
Atlanta, GA 30305
P 404.233.5453
F 404.264.0929


----- Advertising -----