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Exterior of a large building

September 21, 2018

Eau Claire Celebrates the Pablo Center at the Confluence

MADISON, September 21, 2018 – The Eau Claire community was abuzz Saturday celebrating the long-awaited grand opening of the Pablo Center at the Confluence, an expansive performance space for actors, musicians and artists of all ages.

The 130,000-SF arts center was designed by Strang in conjunction with Holzman Moss Bottino. It includes a 1,129-seat main theater, a 397-seat mid-size theater and a gathering space that can be transformed for various types of performances.

“This is a very special and unique space in west-central Wisconsin, designed to be flexible enough to host a variety of community events and memorable enough to draw top performers and big crowds,” said Strang President and CEO Larry Barton. The grand opening ceremony drew huge crowds including state legislators, community leaders, workers, donors and residents. Public-private partnerships between the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire, the City, Eau Claire County, the Eau Claire Regional Arts Council among others made the project possible.

The space will not only showcase and embrace Eau Claire’s diverse performing arts community, but be flexible enough to host a variety of community events. The Center will include a dance studio, art galleries, a recording studio, rehearsal spaces, classrooms, labs and offices for the UW – Eau Claire theater program.

The Pablo Center is a striking piece of art itself. The venue’s exterior is covered with dark stone and dark mortar and large windows that are balanced with smaller colored insets. A curved bay extending from the building is sheathed with waves of bright copper that will transition to a patinated green hue over time. Strang is involved in several other performing arts and cultural projects ranging from large buildings with multiple stages to small single-stage venues. Strang recently completed a renovation of “The Hill Theatre” at American Player’s Theatre in Spring Green, WI and Frank Production’s “Sylvee” theater in Madison, WI. Other performing arts projects currently under construction include the Hamel Music Center on the University of Wisconsin – Madison campus and Northern Sky Theater in Door County, WI.

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