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Augustana Moves, Expands Theater Department

Theater students at Augustana College next fall will have new, bigger facilities for learning, practicing, and performing. Last week, construction began on a new theater department in the College Center, which currently includes a dining hall and bookstore. 

Executive Vice President, Kent Barnds, says the $4-million project will transform the second and third floors of the College Center into a new main theater, which will seat 250, a "Black Box" theater, and offices. Those spaces should be completed in the fall, but additional construction will continue next year. 
Barnds says Bergendoff Hall is over-crowded because it currently houses all of the arts departments. And the top two floors of the College Center have been under-utilized for years. Augustana has been working for 18 months on the plan, as part of an effort to improve all of its arts facilities.  

The old theater space in Bergendoff will eventually be used for the music department. He says the project is the first step in making the intersection of 7th Avenue and 38th Street on campus a "Corner of the Arts."