MBB Architects Renovates Billie Holiday Theatre in Brooklyn, New York

The enlarged stage will allow the theater to host more dance and video performances. All images courtesy Francis Dzikowski/OTTO.

New York–based firm Murphy Burnham & Buttrick Architects (MBB) has completed the renovation of the Billie Holiday Theatre in Brooklyn, New York’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood. First debuting in 1972 at Restoration Plaza in a former Sheffield Farms bottling plant, the landmark performance theater has been upgraded with new technology and safety elements.

Image courtesy Francis Dzikowski/OTTO.

The $4 million, two-year refresh has afforded the theater added versatility to accommodate dance and video performances with an enlarged stage. Narrow seats and have been removed and replaced with an expanded seat count of 200. In addition to a new control room, the crew is now endowed with a new catwalk and rigging. While the theater boasts new acoustic maple panels, dressing rooms have been expanded to include showers. Existing geothermal wells were used in the installation of a new air conditioning system, which ultimately will reduce operation costs by 25 percent.

Image courtesy Francis Dzikowski/OTTO.

The revamped theater has celebrated its return with a performance of playwright John Henry Redwood’s The Old Settler, which will run through November 19.