Melbourne wins with new arts centre

Monash University in the suburbs of Melbourne is to build a AUD45m (€30.5m) performing arts centre. Named for philanthropist Ian Potter, the Ian Potter Centre for the Performing Arts will include a 586-seat theatre, a 130-seat sound gallery and a 200-seat jazz club.

AUD5m was donated by the Ian Potter Foundation towards the construction, with the rest coming from the local Victorian government.

Acoustics in the main hall will be controlled by a Meyer Sound Constellation system, allowing the sound to be adjusted according to performance type – from an echo-free setup for spoken word to a reverb-laden dynamic for choral music. Designed by Peter Elliott Architecture and Urban Design, the building is expected to open in early 2018.

‘This redevelopment isn’t just a win for the staff and students of Monash University; it’s a win for the local community who will also have access to the state-of-the-art facilities, said Steve Herbert, minister for training and skills in Victoria.

“It’s fantastic to see our iconic performing arts venue progress to the next stage and further widen its offering across a diverse spectrum of artistic genres,’ added Monash Academy of Performing Arts executive director Paul Grabowsky. ‘We will continue to attract the highest calibre of performers to this exciting new space which will provide endless opportunities for our students, staff and the surrounding community into the future.’