[r76] Funds given to USI for new teaching theatre applauded by S. Ind. State Reps. (4/14/2011)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Start Date: 4/14/2011 All Day
End Date: 4/14/2011
It was announced today by the General Assembly Budget Committee that the University of Southern Indiana (USI) will receive $13 million to construct and finance a new Teacher Theatre.

"USI's enrollment is rapidly increasing and we want to ensure they have the best resources possible," said Rep. Suzanne Crouch (R-Evansville). "Replacing the Teacher Theatre will improve the education opportunities for the students involved in the program and I'm happy to see this project approved so that they may further strengthen their theatre programs and more easily hold student and outside performances."

The project will replace the existing theatre, costume shop and scene shop at USI. The proposed theatre will be approximately 21,929 square feet, will seat approximately 350 people, and will be constructed adjacent to the University Center.

"I am so pleased USI will have the opportunity to build a new Teacher Theatre," said Rep. Sue Ellspermann (R-Ferdinand). "USI is continuing to grow and will better serve their students and the community with this new theatre. The university has an excellent theatre program and this will help take it to the next level. I look forward to the seeing the project completed."

The new theatre will serve the needs of the theatre program and will provide a venue for additional events, such as guest speakers, small performance groups, and musical recitals and performances. It will also provide a practice lab/classroom to teach key design and production elements, enhancing the education of USI theatre students.

"The new Teaching Theatre at USI will provide increased services for the students and the community that I am happy to see," said Rep. Ron Bacon (R-Chandler). "USI has a great theatre program already, but this will strengthen it and building the new theatre will bring jobs to the community. This is an excellent project and I look forward to the improvements it will provide for a university that consistently looks to provide the best possible opportunities possible for students' academic and personal growth, and helping the community."

The new theatre will also provide areas to facilitate the loading in and out of sets and properties, and provide offstage storage space, green room space, dressing rooms, wardrobe, and laundry facilities.

"I am pleased that USI will be receiving the needed funds to move forward with this project. USI offers many enriching academic programs and I am honored to have such a strong educational institution in my district. USI enhances our community and with the new teaching theatre their arts program will be able to thrive and further develop our arts community," said Rep. Wendy McNamara (R-Mount Vernon).

"We are very pleased to receive these funds from the state," said USI Vice President for Government and University Relations Cindy Brinker. "We look forward to beginning the construction of the new Teacher Theatre as soon as possible."