BAM celebrates opening of new performance space
by Andrew Pavia
Sep 12, 2012 | 2090 views | 0 0 comments | 55 55 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) celebrated the completion of their newest venue last week. BAM's newest building, named after Richard B. Fisher, a longtime friend and Endowment Trust Chairman of BAM, is located at 321 Ashland Place.

The new venue is seven stories tall and encompasses 40,0000 square feet. The two-year construction project was completed in the spring, and the building is open to the public just in time for the Next Wave Festival 2012, which kicked off on Wednesday, September 5.

The BAM Fisher building will contain spaces designed to accommodate a range of performances, rehearsal space, and even a movable stage. A rooftop garden – the Geraldine Stutz Gardens - features sculpture work and sustainable landscaping and is open to the public and for private events.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg was in attendance at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, September 5.

“The new Richard B. Fisher building will expand access to BAM's renowned programs, provide flexible space for our artists and community groups to exercise their imaginations, and ensure that the growing Downtown Brooklyn Cultural District continues to enhance our city's economy, identity and quality of life for generations to come,” he said.

The Fisher building is a $50 million project and the first new performance venue added to the BAM campus since 1987.

Inside the new space will be a flexible 250-seat theater designed to accommodate a variety of performances and art forms, a workshop used for BAM education and humanities purposes and an exhibition space for Brooklyn visual artists. The lower lobby even features carpeting by a designer, Madeline Weinrib.

The new Fisher building will be hosting education and humanity programming, and BAM will be expanding it's literary and lecture series with the additional space. Also, weekend live performances, presentations by artists for weekday school audiences, and weekend family event will be hosted in the new building.

“It was critical for BAM to create a building where we can thrive artistically and give back to our Brooklyn community in ways that feel uniquely BAM,” said BAM President Karen Brooks Hopkins. “We are forever grateful to the private donors, particularly the Fisher family and Jeanne Donovan Fisher, for their indispensable role in making this long held dream a reality.”

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