TheatreSquared’s new 50,000 SF building unites two states-of-the art theatres, a dedicated rehearsal/event space, administrative offices, education and community spaces, on-site scenery, props and costume workshops, outdoor terraces at three levels, and an open-all-day café/bar. In addition to performing and support spaces, there are eight short-term residences for visiting actors, writers, and directors—demonstrating TheatreSquared’s commitment to the artist community.
Two innovative theatres were created in order to be capable of mounting complex, technically-challenging productions situated within acoustically isolated envelopes.TheatreSquared’s previous venue was abnormally wide and shallow resulting in elaborate and extensive stage settings and an immersive, intimate audience experience. This extra-wide stage was replicated in the new building and theatre audience capacity was dramatically increased while maintaining intimacy; indeed, the last row is only one row deeper than in TheatreSquared’s previous space. Audience members enter the main theatre at the stage level, the same level as the actors—another experiential element that was preserved from the previous venue—further heightening the up-close and personal experience that has become a hallmark of TheatreSquared’s performances.
TheatreSquare’s palette of exposed materials was selected for its ability to act as a structure and acoustic isolator, and as interior and exterior finishes that recalls the rugged nature of the surrounding Ozark region. Furniture was constructed out of trees felled from the site, local Ozark boulders were embedded into the landscaping, and local pine was used to make the board-form concrete walls, which was then recycled and used as an interior finish. The charring of the wood on the exterior creates a natural protective coating with an expected lifetime of 50 years or longer. A limited material palette was used with priority given to durability, flexibility, and the building’s technical and performance systems.