Black Ensemble Theatre

Chicago, Illinois

Pepper teamed up with Brown & Momen, Inc. to renovate the nationally and internationally renowned strong arts institution.

The project involved the complete renovation of an existing two-story structure and the demolition of an adjacent one-story building to create a new two-and-a-half-story theater. With its 299-seat main stage, 150-seat studio theater, rehearsal studios, classrooms and music rooms, the new facility will enable Black Ensemble Theater to increase the scope of its productions and expand its educational outreach programs. Backstage areas support both theaters and include dressing rooms, scene shop, prop shop, costume shop, rehearsal room and wardrobe room.

From the beginning, creating an environmentally sensitive, sustainable and energy efficient facility was a goal for Black Ensemble Theater. The theater is pursuing LEED certification—its sustainable features include a green roof garden, energy efficient lighting and mechanical systems. Pepper incorporated recycled products, regional materials and renewable resources throughout construction.

Partners
Owner: Black Ensemble Theatre
Architect: Morris Architects Planners
Joint Venture Partner: Brown & Momen