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Construction began on the Wallace Hall Fine Arts Center in January 1967. The $1,500,000 (1968) building was designed by Architects Hofferbert & Ellis. The center was built with excellent acoustics and modern stage equipment. Upon completion, the center hosted performers from around the globe with the Callan Concert Series.
By 1997, the near constant use of the center had taken it's toll. Without major renovations, the center would face closure. In 1998, however, Gadsden State and the City of Gadsden raised over $450,000 to complete the needed repairs. Over 1,200 new theatre seats were installed. The lobby restrooms were gutted and replaced. New dressing space was added along with a host of other facility improvements.
In 2011, the Fine Arts Center received a landmark grant from the United States Department of Energy of over $150,000 to transform the theatrical lighting systems into more an energy efficient, green system. The facility now boasts a LED (light emitting diode) lighting system which saves an estimated $35,000 in energy costs annually.
The Gadsden Live Performance Series was founded in 2012 as a consortium between Gadsden State, the Gadsden Cultural Arts Foundation, and The Gadsden Times newspaper. Gadsden Live was created to fill the void left behind when the Callan Concert Series ceased operations. The series launched in the winter of 2012 and will present four to six nationally touring performances annually.
In summer 2013, Gadsden State Community College completed a comprehensive Facilities Master Plan which identified several key projects that will dramatically change the face of the Fine Arts Center. The proposed enhancements include: a backstage annex to include a large rehearsal hall, dressing room space, storage, and scene shops; expanded restrooms, concessions, and box office facilities in the lobby; improved ADA access on the orchestra level and new ADA access to the balcony and gallery spaces; transformation of the courtyard into a sculpture garden which might also be used as pre-function space for the theatre; a fully motorized theatrical fly system and updated electrical infrastructure. This master plan will be implemented in phases as funding becomes available.
Past Performances Include: