TexARTS Announces Studio Expansion

TexARTS, a performing and visual arts nonprofit organization, is expanding its current Lakeway facility with the addition of five studio spaces. This growth allows the TexARTS Academy to enhance its existing arts curriculum and offer new educational programing for youths and adults in dance, voice, drama and the visual arts. The 4,000 square foot expansion will increase the TexARTS' Doherty Family Studios, located at 2300 Lohman's Spur, to a total of 10,000 square feet. TexARTS, now in its eleventh year, serves over 200 students in after school and weekend programs and plans to open the new studio space on August 29, 2016, just in time for fall classes.

"The extension of our educational space provides us with an exciting opportunity to develop a more robust and broad educational program to serve the Lake Travis and greater Austin communities, said NaTanya Anderson, Whole Foods senior marketing director and TexARTS board member. "Our students will enjoy more diverse arts learning tracks, including visual arts, dance, acting, music, and of course the well-known TexARTS Musical Theater production program. We look forward to growing our community of talented instructors and welcoming new students into our programs."

The new space features a large dance studio with sprung floors allowing for more advanced dance technique training. A dedicated visual arts studio offers adult and youth classes in ceramics, mixed media, acrylic painting, and drawing. An additional acting studio allows TexARTS to expand its existing drama program by offering classes in Improv and Shakespearean techniques. The space also houses two private music studios allowing TexARTS to broaden its private voice program and create opportunities for students to take private piano and guitar lessons.

"I have never danced on a sprung floor before," said Peyton Calhoon, a member of the TexARTS Broadway Company and senior at Regents School of Austin, "but to have one would give us the ability to enhance our performances and skill level. I'm so excited!"

"The college admissions and audition process has become highly competitive for students who want to study theatre. Less than 3% of applicants are accepted," said Darren Gibson, TexARTS artistic director. "Our new studios will allow TexARTS to continue our exceptional training, while affording us the opportunity to give each young artist a stronger foundation in each discipline."

This facility expansion in turn creates a dedicated performance venue at TexARTS. Historically, The Kam and James Morris Theatre, a 123-seat in-house black box venue, was over utilized as a dance studio, rehearsal space, scenic shop, and performance space. The addition of these studios eliminates the space constraints that required staff and volunteers to rotate spaces, sets, and schedules to accommodate production and academy programming.

"Freeing up our theatre will have a huge impact on our programming. It allows TexARTS to run our shows longer and offers our theatre as a viable rental venue for other local theatre companies," said Jarret Mallon, TexARTS executive director.

TexARTS is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to cultivate a thriving arts community by exposing all people to the visual and performing arts. The TexARTS Academy serves over 200 students and offers year-round classes and summer camps in acting, voice, visual arts and dance as well as a season of completely staged youth productions. The TexARTS Professional Series produces five productions each year and employs hundreds of professional actors, musicians and artistic staff. For more information about TexARTS, visit tex-arts.org.


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