Today, Studio RED Architects announced its design of renovations for Houston’s Alley Theatre. This will be the first renovation to the iconic building at 615 Texas Avenue since opening in 1968. Renovations come as part of a $73 million capital campaign to improve the audience experience and attract the finest actors, playwrights and production professionals from around the world.
The building, originally designed by acclaimed architect Ulrich Franzen, has long been a beloved figure on Houston’s downtown landscape, and project designer Pete Ed Garrett, AIA had no desire to change that. “The new design will become a landmark in the theater industry and more importantly, with our Houston patrons. I am pleased to be working again in the Houston Theater District, which I have been a part of for many years, having served as the principal-in-charge for the Hobby Center and the Wortham Center” said Garrett, a founding partner of Studio RED.
A Much Needed Change
The current Alley Theatre building has received more than 8 million visitors over its 45 years, and hosts 393 performances each year. The new design will enhance productions with new seating and a new stage configuration equipped with a fly loft, wing space, and an under stage trap system- all modern features that the old stage lacked. A new seating layout will allow audience members to sit closer to the stage, making for a more intimate experience.
“This is not just about the building,” said Alley Theatre Artistic Director Gregory Boyd. “We’re excited about the prospect of what will feel like a new facility, bringing it into the 21st century in terms of what we can create on stage as well as the comfort of the audience. Yet also keeping the ‘Alleyness’- the building’s iconic architecture and the intimacy between actor and audience that our patrons love. The whole campaign is about the artistic product and the experience it affords to the artists and the audience.”
About Studio RED Architects
Pete Ed Garrett, AIA is an award-winning architect with over 28 years experience designing cultural arts and entertainment facilities. He is a founding partner of Studio RED Architects, a Houston based firm leading the industry in innovative architectural design.
Studio RED is a Houston-based architectural firm with a reputation for design excellence in entertainment, commercial and worship facilities. Project examples include worship centers such as Lakewood Church, performing arts centers such as the Texas Southmost College Music Education Building, renovation projects such as Brennan’s Restaurant and John C. McGovern campus (formerly Nabisco Bakery), sustainable projects, such as City of Houston Permitting Center (tracking LEED Gold) and Amazing Place (LEED Silver) and educational projects like University of Houston Clear Lake – Pearland Campus.