On Sunday, February 7, 2016 Greenhill School celebrated the inauguration of the new Marshall Family Performing Arts Center with an all-community open house featuring musical performances by Preschool, Lower School and Middle School students and student and faculty artwork. Designed by award-winning architecture firm Weiss/Manfredi and named for the Marshall family, which includes long-time Board of Trustees member and alumnus E. Pierce Marshall, Jr.’86, the Marshall Family Performing Arts Center is the central component of Greenhill’s Building Community Campaign, the largest and widest-reaching campaign in the School’s 65-year history.
“We know that students learn best in an environment of trust, where they are known and cared for by passionate, talented teachers,” shared Scott. A. Griggs, Head of School. “Central to this is creating appropriate spaces that facilitate student-teacher relations and that ultimately allow our students to grow and flourish. The new Marshall Family Performing Arts Center will give our students a marquee experience for classes, lectures, performances and community gatherings.”
Designed by the innovative New York–based firm Weiss/Manfredi, this 54,000 square feet performing arts center creates a new stage for all of the arts, and includes a 600-seat proscenium theatre, a 150-seat studio theater, a dance and choral hall, a video production and digital media lab, a production studio, two fine arts galleries, an expansive grand lobby, and ancillary teaching and performance spaces. The new building is located on the northeast corner of the campus and is surrounded by 100 additional parking spaces to provide easy accessibility to the Greenhill community.
“We are fortunate to now have a place where our students can truly discover their passions and talents, beyond their strict pursuit of academic excellence,” said Campaign Chair and Board Chair-Elect E. Pierce Marshall, Jr. ’86. “I am thrilled that we have created these incredible facilities to match our students’ remarkable artistic capabilities, both in the near term and far into the future.”
“We were inspired by the possibility of creating a topographic crossroads for the performing arts—a three-dimensional intersection where theater, music, dance, and film can take center stage at the Greenhill School,” said Marion Weiss and Michael Manfredi.
“Greenhill’s faculty inspire and cultivate the talent in our students every day,” said Current Board Chair Will Rose ’85. “Catherine and I believe that the new performing arts space designed by Weiss/Manfredi will encourage and excite faculty and students to reach new levels of excellence.”
Nearly 1,000 current students and families filled the Marshall Center, spilling into the Michael Manes Grand Lobby for light bites and drinks between performances, and perching at the top of the grand staircase to admire the view of campus. Families also explored the artwork featured in the Weiner Family and Ferrer Family galleries, took advantage of the beautiful weather in the expansive, welcoming courtyard.
To accommodate the Marshall Family Performing Arts Center, two athletic fields were relocated to the southeast corner of campus. The new Jennifer Goodnight Maalouf ’86 and Frankel Fields are regulation-sized soccer fields that are used for a variety of sports, including field hockey, soccer and lacrosse. A new athletic pavilion provides locker rooms, restroom facilities and storage for the fields.
In addition, the School redesigned Crossman Hall – the original dining hall built in 1964, using square footage from the adjacent Zale-Fields Theatre to expand seating, to create a dedicated eating space for the School’s youngest students, and modernized serving stations and menus. This refurbished facility has transformed the dining experience for every student at Greenhill.
Primary Project Partners
The School extends a special thanks to its partners throughout this project: Weiss/Manfredi, Page Southerland Page, Andres Construction, Fisher Dachs Associates, MKA, Jaffe Holden Acoustics, Tillotson, Pacheco Koch, Datacom Design Group, and the Town of Addison.
The Greenhill Board of Trustees spearheaded this initiative to raise $52.5M in capital and new endowment for the Building Community Campaign, and has given generously to this effort both in time and resources. In addition to the Marshall Heritage Foundation, supporters of this project can be viewed here www.greenhill.org/buildingcommunity
Weiss/Manfredi Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism is a multidisciplinary design practice based in New York City known for the dynamic integration of architecture, art, infrastructure, and landscape design. Noted for the strategic engagement of architecture and site, the firm has won the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award for Architecture, AIA New York’s Gold Medal, and the Architectural League of New York’s “Emerging Voices” Award, acknowledging the distinct vision of the firm. The firm’s competition-winning projects include the Seattle Art Museum: Olympic Sculpture Park, which was named one of Time Magazine’s Top 10 Architectural Marvels, the Barnard College Diana Center, and the Women’s Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery. Current and upcoming projects include The Bridge at Cornell NYC Tech and the renovation of and expansion to the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi, India.