Gonzaga University Myrtle Woldson Performing Arts Center

A signature venue worthy of world-class performances.

This new performing arts center is a transformative addition to the Gonzaga University campus. The state-of-the-art multi-venue performance facility hosts theater, music, and dance productions while honoring Myrtle Woldson, whose generous gift made the center possible.

To address the university’s desire for the building to encourage creativity, collaboration, and engagement, Bernardo Wills Architects, in association with Pfeiffer Partners, sited the LEED Silver structure in a prominent, highly visible location where faculty, students, and staff can see and easily access the center.

The design aesthetic was influenced by the building site and local/regional landscape features. Due to zoning-code height restrictions and the natural slope of the site, the stage (by far the tallest building element) was located below-grade. This allows the public lobby to overlook the Spokane River and enhances overall visibility both from and to the building. Material selection was based on primary masonry materials used throughout the university campus and the Woldsons’ fondness for the copper steeple of the nearby Jundt Art Museum.

Spaces housed in the center include:

  • a multi-level lobby
  • a two-level, 759-seat multipurpose theater and concert hall
  • a 130-seat recital hall/rehearsal space for music and dance
  • the Woldson Collection, which showcases artifacts and digital displays celebrating Myrtle Woldson’s life, entrepreneurship, and philanthropy
  • a multidisciplinary design studio
  • four performer dressing rooms, a wardrobe room, and a green room
  • ticketing and administrative offices

Bernardo Wills Architects also supplied landscape design services for this project.


  • Client: Gonzaga University
  • Location: Spokane, Washington
  • Size: 58,500 square feet
  • Completed: 2019

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