With a seating capacity of 678, the flagship of the Department of Theatre and Film Studies’ performance facilities is the Fine Arts Theatre. Designed by Atlanta architects Tucker and Howell, the Fine Arts Theatre was christened in May, 1941 and was, at the time of its construction the most expensive building in the University of Georgia system at $450,000. It was also the last project built by the Works Progress Administration (WPA).
The original interior details of the facility were inspired by the work of the famed British designer Sir John Soane and patterned after the Bank of England. Shortly after completion, the theatre served as a training location for World War II pilots. Over the next half-century, the Fine Arts became a centerpiece of the community, bringing music, opera, theatre, and much more to the Athens area. After a $4.5 million restoration, the Fine Arts Theatre reopened in 2010.
Fine Arts has hosted many historical acts and players, such as B.B. King and John Belushi, and brought forth to the world performers like Wayne Knight, Kyle Chandler, and Monte Markham. However, the Fine Arts Theatre’s illustrious history is only the beginning. This facility has been newly renovated and returned to its original splendor. Beneath the classical charm and sweeping lines, within this beautiful living work of art beats the heart of a fully modern performance venue.