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550-seat performing arts theater, view from opera boxes, suspended sound baffling, stage lighting, warm wood paneling on walls, partitions and seating, people on the stage appear to be debating or having a spelling bee
King Abdullah Academy - Theater

Campus Anchor Dedicated to Performing Arts Activities

Client

King Abdullah Academy

Project Location

Fairfax County, VA

Theater Capacity

550 seats

Campus Type

International Baccalaureate World School

Rooted in Islamic traditions and values, the new King Abdullah Academy is a bi-lingual International Baccalaureate World School that institutes a highly progressive curriculum to prepare students for a global economy. Our design pays homage to Arabic culture through architectural themes in a modern, forward-thinking manner. The school, which features an early childhood center along with separate lower, middle, and upper schools, is designed with a precast concrete exterior façade that subtly incorporates Arabic architectural patterns and knits the entire complex together.

A major element for the entire school is a 550-seat auditorium/theater designed to support an array of performing arts activities (music, dance, theater) and school community uses (assemblies, lectures, film, special gatherings). The theater is located adjacent to the school’s main entry lobby, which acts as a pre-function and gathering space. A series of student-friendly catwalks above the stage provide safe student access to lighting and rigging, while a separate scene shop permits the construction of sets off-stage, freeing up the theater for other events and uses. Other important arts program spaces include a black-box studio rehearsal theater, dressing rooms, costume shop, music teaching spaces, and several visual arts studios. Rich stained wood finishes, Islamic-inspired grillwork, and carefully designed house lighting create a dignified interior space. DLR Group, in collaboration with theater designer Martin Vinik Planning for the Arts, provided planning, architecture, and engineering design services.

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