Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Chapman University receives $25-million gift for new theater

May 11, 2009 | 11:50 am

Chapman University has received a $25-million donation that will be used to build a new performing arts center, officials announced.

The donation was made by several longtime Orange County residents who wish to remain anonymous, said Mary Platt, a campus spokeswoman. The gift has one caveat: The university must raise another $25 million to match it. Platt said that matching the gift would be a challenge in the weak economy, but that university officials were optimistic.

With the donation, Chapman will be able to move forward with plans to build a performing arts center to showcase its growing College of Performing Arts, which has more than 700 students. Currently, students studying music, theater and dance perform in an 88-year-old auditorium that was originally built for Orange High School.

The new auditorium will cost about $50 million and seat roughly 1,300.

The donation is the second-largest in Chapman’s history. In 1998, an anonymous donor gave the college $26 million, Platt said.

--My-Thuan Tran