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The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Out with the old, in with the new City College prepares to open renovated auditorium by year’s end

An artist's rendering of the future auditoruim; auditorium prior to renovation; current renovation efforts. Photo By: Mike Nicholson || [email protected]

The City College Auditorium and Art Court Theatre have been under renovation since June 2010, scheduled for completion Dec. 28, but will be ready for classes spring 2012.

“The historic structure was built in 1936 and hasn’t been touched for roughly 40 years,” said Greg Hayman, City College director of operations. “As part of the current renovation, it was recently updated with a brand-new air conditioning system, electrical
wiring and IT infrastructure.”

With in the layout of the remodeled auditorium, Hayman said all classrooms will have electronic projectors, screens and speakers.

Hayman said the auditorium, which formerly had 1,200 seats, will now seat approximately 600. The renovation has added a new control room, an orchestra pit that lifts and lowers, trap room and new lighting for the cat-walk to the building.

“It’s exciting,” said Chris Iwata, dean of humanities and fine arts. “Everything is coming together. Every month the renovation has something new that has been installed or constructed, and the anticipation is great. My faculty members and I are looking forward to working in the remodeled space.”

Some theater students say it has been a struggle to take part in theater because of the construction.

City College student Christopher Saechao, majoring in theatre arts and English literature, said, “Just today my acting class took place in a regular classroom. We had to stack up all the desks to one side of the class and put them back when we were done. It was a hassle.”

According to Hayman, theater classes have been held in the temporary buildings, but City College has managed to have them one way or another.
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“It’s not perfect, but I don’t have any big complaints. It’s what I love doing [theater],” said Saechao.

According to Iwata, the faculty members have become anxious for the renovations to complete so they can get the show on the road.

“It’s exciting. Everything is coming together,” said Iwata, “Every month the renovation has something new that has been installed or constructed, and the anticipation is great.”

Faculty members said they are looking forward to working in the remodeled space.

“I’m excited!” said Angela Dee Alforque, theatre arts and film professor. “I’ll be able to have a private office space with my students. That will be nice to have again.”

Though they have been displaced, Alforque said, “We’re making the best of what we got. There is really no reason to complain and be grumpy.”

Music department faculty said they are thrilled about having a place to perform again.

“We will have better acoustics. The old auditorium was a barn,” said Kathleen Poe, chairman of the music department and music professor. “Maybe [we’ll] even bring outside artists to perform and communicate with the music and theatre department. It’s exciting to consider the possibilities.”

Poe said more people have the opportunity to become more involved with campus activities once the auditorium reopens. “It’s not just the school that can benefi t from this but also the community,” said Poe, “especially if we get bigger acts to rent the facilities and bring the community into our house.”

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