Date Completed
20,465 SF

Waukee Theatre Arts Center

Waukee, Iowa

As part of their facilities master planning process, the Waukee Community School District decided to move forward with a theater arts addition to their 8/9 Prairieview School.  Since the District already had a large proscenium (traditional) auditorium at the High School, they realized they had an opportunity to add an alternative type of theater venue as a learning and performing center.  frk guided the District’s Theater Design Task Force through a decision making process that resulted in a 400 seat thrust theater addition which would be used solely for theater and spoken arts performances.  The audience surrounds the stage on three sides in this type of theater, which creates a very different performing and viewing venue.  The audience’s proximity to the stage is much more intimate; in this case no one is farther than 35 feet from the performers.  In order to provide even more flexibility for set pieces and lighting options, a 40’ by 40’ continuous tension wire grid catwalk is provided 19’ above the stage and audience seating. 


The “Theatre Arts Center” addition is self-contained so it can be used after school hours as a stand-alone facility for productions and events.  A separate public entrance opens into a spacious lobby featuring a dramatic image projection wall and display casework.  Also included in the addition are a scene shop, an ample back stage, a number of storage spaces, a green room, and dressing and make up rooms.  During school hours the theater is directly connected to the main circulation of the school and contains educational spaces for theater courses.