Club Executives & Directors
IC Noon Rotary Stories
New Member Induction –
Classification: Business Services: Information Technology
(Sponsor Mark Nolte)
Chuck Swanson, Executive Director, Hancher Auditorium
Fellow Rotarian Steve West introduced Chuck Swanson for today’s program on Hancher Auditorium.
“The arts are alive in the Greater Iowa City area.”
Many are watching the progress of the new Hancher Auditorium on the banks of the Iowa River. For the past eight years, Chuck and his staff have been homeless and have been hosting events at multiple venues throughout the Corridor. Hancher is an icon of the university and the first impression of campus when visitors approach Iowa City. The building originally opened 38 years ago and the new building will showcase technological advancements that were not available when it was first constructed such as digital technology and other modern features to bring the audience closer to performances. New Haven, Connecticut – based Pelli Clarke Pelli has been overseeing the design of the new building since the firm’s selection was announced by UI officials in 2010.
Pelli Clarke Pelli is known for its design of performing arts centers so they were a natural choice for the project. The flood of 2008 gave the university a chance to re-define Hancher. The 144,770 square foot, $125 million building will be impressive from a design perspective and will be functional as well. In addition, Hancher will now connect visually to the UI campus, arts campus, to the Iowa River and the community with the back of the house on the Park Road side of the building. Michell Hirsch, Principal at Pelli Clarke Pelli was on hand today to provide a construction update to our members. His PowerPoint provided an overview of the design process and renderings of the new building. Mr. Hirsch commented that Iowa City is an amazing, collaborative, supportive community and the vision is starting to become very real on the banks of the Iowa River.
Chuck, his staff and the UI community are so pleased with the new facility that they are hosting a Ribbon-cutting Ceremony and Open House on Friday, September 9 at 3:00 p.m. and another Open House on Sunday, September 11 at 2:00 p.m.. The events are free and open to the public. This will be a unique opportunity to stand on the stage, go back stage and see the most intimate setting of 1,800 seats, 2 tiers, balconies, and galleries in the main performance space. The season kicks off with a free concert outside on Hancher Green on Friday, September 16 at 7:30 with Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue and Preservation Hall Jazz Band. The Preservation Hall Jazz Band opened the original Hancher Auditorium in 1972, and it’s only right that the band heralds the opening of the new Hancher Auditorium. Other highlights of the season are Steve Martin and Martin Short; Broadway shows such as The Book of Mormon, The Sound of Music and Mamma Mia!; Classical music with Renee Fleming; the brand new Nutcracker performed by The Joffrey Ballet in their 60th anniversary year and more.
For more information and upcoming events, please visit: http://hancher.uiowa.edu/.
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