The Donald W. Nixon Centre for Performing and Visual Arts first opened April 1, 2004. The original construction was funded by a Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) grant in conjunction with an investment by the Coweta County School System. The Coweta County School System owns the facility, and the facility’s calendar mirrors that of the school system.
Then, as now, Nixon Centre’s vision has been to connect the community of Coweta County to every aspect of the Arts. This is a multi-purpose facility with robust programming consisting of art exhibits, a variety of summer camp options for children in 1st grade through high school, a student/community string orchestra, a community chorale group, and facility rentals. The 48,000 square foot structure also contains an elegant lobby, lecture halls, and star quality dressing rooms, all anchored by the 1,000-seat state-of-the-art theater.
2019 marked the beginning of a $5.7 million renovation project to expand the Centre. The intent was to upgrade the facility with a new kitchen, more storage, additional parking, and a brand-new multi-purpose space. The new space, which is 68’ x 68’ wall to all, will serve as a secondary performance space for events such as author readings, master classes, warmup space for larger events, and small group performances.
The space is equipped with a performance-grade sound system and theatre lighting along with a curtain track and drapery around the perimeter of the room. If desired, you can pull the floor length black curtains around the perimeter to create what is essentially a black box theatre. There’s one other amenity in the new space that I haven’t mentioned yet: a full coverage SkyDeck™ tension wire grid.
And What’s Cool
The grid is made up of 72 panels and covers the entire space. The grid is accessed via the mezzanine level of the building, thus leaving the performance and seating area of the black box unencumbered by a staircase. No matter what kind of event is scheduled into the black box, access to lighting and sound equipment will be fast, efficient, and completely safe.
Like most performing arts venues, the Nixon Centre had to cancel its 2020 programming due to the pandemic, so they haven’t been able to utilize the new space yet. Director, Cathe Nixon assured me that events are currently being rescheduled and the Centre is now accepting applications for their 2021 summer camps!
SkyView Photography did a really nice 3D Fly Through of the Nixon Centre. Take a walk around the newly renovated facility here. Click the second icon from the left at the bottom left of the page to View the Floorplan and then click into the Black Box if you want to see the SkyDeck.