The 2017-18 academic year launched a new academic structure at SDSU, the School of Performing Arts.
Its mission is to foster and provide opportunities for creativity, performance and both artistic and intellectual understanding through the study and practice of performing arts within contemporary and historic cultures. Degrees will be offered in the areas of theater and dance, as well as music.
Central to the success of the school is The Performing Arts Center and the current expansion that will be completed by January 2019. A groundbreaking ceremony took place in April 2017 to recognize the more than 200 private donors who have contributed more than $23 million to the $50 million goal. Other investments include $6 million from the city of Brookings, $6 million from the university and $13 million from the Higher Education Facility Fund.
Originally built in 2003, the PAC includes a 1,000-seat concert hall and 180-seat black box theater. The 96,000 square-foot expansion includes an 850-seat proscenium theater, 225-seat recital hall equipped with a $1 million Reuter pipe organ, a professional dance studio, ensemble space for instrumental and vocal rehearsal and instruction, as well as faculty teaching studios, offices and classrooms.
The facility, in addition to supporting the academic mission of the School of Performing Arts, will establish Brookings as a premier center for the arts in South Dakota and the surrounding region.