Architecture creates a project for today that incorporates the past – A blend of old and new, this Centre for the Performing Arts marks a turning point for its waterfront site – from a 19th century industrial brewery to a 21st century cultural epicentre.
The only facility of its kind in the region, the centre unites a diverse range of performance and creative art disciplines under a single roof, housing a 566-seat performance hall, classrooms, as well as rehearsal and performance spaces for the School of Music, Drama, Art, Film and Media. The former site of the historic Morton Brewery, the area has been reconceived as a world class performing arts centre – and along with the neighbouring Tett Centre redefines the area as the cultural epicentre of the region.
The building’s design further reinforces Kingston’s identity as a waterfront city, enhancing the relationship between city and lake. Upon entering you are greeted by a large public lobby with stunning waterfront views. A patio allows patrons to sit close to the lake, while also maintaining a natural edge between land and water. The stainless steel facade reflects the monochromatic white/greys of the winter skies and frozen lake.
Connecting to History
The building emerges from a blend of old and new. The centre uses reclaimed wood flooring, columns and beams from the historic buildings as finishes in the interior, and incorporates part of the historic brewery and stable. The architectural strategy in reusing the site’s historic buildings was developed through workshops with preservation consultants and the Heritage Committee of Kingston.