Upper School Theater

Wilmington Friends School | Wilmington, Delaware

After a fire burned through their Upper School auditorium, ruining that space as well as their gymnasium, Wilmington Friends School needed new theater facilities delivered quickly and efficiently. Thanks to previous partnerships with the school, we were able to jump immediately into design and had the project completed two years post-fire.

The highlight of the new performing arts center, which replaced the ruined auditorium, is a 500-seat theater proscenium theater with balcony seating. It is supported by lighting catwalks, a full fly-loft, state-of-the-art LED lighting system, and an exterior bridge connection to the existing performing arts rehearsal space.

A new day-lit entry atrium connects the performing arts center and the gym, which is situated directly below the theater, to the rest of campus and provides a new front door to welcome the whole community to the school’s public functions.  The space was reclaimed from a narrow exterior entry court left over between two buildings and includes a grand stair and multipurpose meeting room. Lighting and acoustic treatments make the space inviting throughout the day.

Despite the speed at which design and construction occurred, the collaborative team was still able to work together to achieve LEED Gold Certification.


LEED Gold Certified
AIA Delaware Chapter, Design Merit Award (2014)

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Size: 27,099 sf (total project)
Budget: $8 million (total project)


Architecture, Interior Design, Sustainability

Upper School Theater

Wilmington Friends School | Wilmington, Delaware

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