By Emily Delgado
Space Place Theater, located in the basement of North Hall at the University of Iowa, received significant renovations and improvements that will improve the experience for performers and the audience.
The theater has been a longtime space for various arts performances, including dance and opera. The theater’s purpose remains the same — a space to showcase Iowa’s performing arts.
Cindy Kubu, the Dance Opera Costume Shop manager who assists with many of the performances at Space Place, said the COVID-19 pandemic prompted discussions of renovations. Kubu said the time away from the theater made them realize the need to increase functionality and appearance.
“It is a very important performance venue on this campus, and so I think that Space Place continues to grow in its own way because think of the variety of things that go on in there,” Kubu said.
The renovations include an updated dressing room with multiple private changing areas, new lighting to increase the safety of the space, an updated lobby with new doors, and reupholstered seating. All the renovations are designed to make the performance space more efficient, safe, and welcoming for everyone.
The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, which is home to the Departments of Dance, Theatre Arts, the School of Music, and the Performing Arts Production Unit, has been supportive of the renovations from the start, Kubu said. The $100,000 in upgrades was funded by the college.
“It was great that we had the support to carve out that time and the financial backing to make those changes and improvements,” Kubu said.
Space Place is housed in North Hall, which also includes classrooms and the UI School of Social Work. It sometimes makes the theater a bit unknown. The hope is for the renovations to the exterior to announce the theater’s presence.
“Just turning Space Place into a better version of itself,” Kubu said. “We feel very supported. Our doors are always open, so please come see what we're doing down here. It's exciting.”
For upcoming events at Space Place, visit the Performing Arts at Iowa website.
Photos by Alice Eberhart