Children’s Theater Company, Minneapolis Institute of Art

Children’s Theater Company

Client: Minneapolis Institute of Art
Architect: Michael Graves Architecture & Design
Timber Frame Tower: Bitterroot Timber Frames of Montana

“The Children’s Theatre Company project consists of a 180,000 square foot renovation of an existing theater and back-of-house facilities and an addition of 45,000 square feet.
The design of the building responded not only the aesthetic context of the existing historic buildings, but also the critical technical requirements of a professional theater company.”

Children's Theater Company Minneapolis Institute of Art Project With Michael Graves who designed the new addition
Children’s Theater Company Minneapolis Institute of Art Project With Michael Graves who designed the new addition

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Prior to the renovation, the Theater’s energy and creativity were masked by the relatively blank facades of its wing of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. The new theater lobby is a dramatic multi-story space with luminous glass walls and a roof lantern, which creates an iconic and dynamic presence on the arts campus.

The timber structure was designed by Michael Graves and Associates and inspired by the Globe Theatre in London. The timbers are reclaimed from what was the Big Joe Flour Mill in Wabasha, Minnesota. They were sent to Brett Mauri and  Bitterroot Timber Frames in Stevensville, Montana to be milled and fitted together into the structure.”

Children's Theater Company Minneapolis Institute of Art Project With Michael Graves who designed the new addition
Children’s Theater Company Minneapolis Institute of Art Project With Michael Graves who designed the new addition
Children's Theater Company Minneapolis Institute of Art Project With Michael Graves who designed the new addition
Children’s Theater Company Minneapolis Institute of Art Project With Michael Graves who designed the new addition

The Children’s Theatre Company, housed in a 1974 Kenzo Tange-designed complex, was turning away students because of a lack of space. With a goal to expand theatre offerings, CTC hired Michael Graves & Associates to design a 45,000 square foot addition. RSP collaborated with Graves’ team on the project.