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The Kennedy Center

News

09/21/2015 $136 Million Raised for the Kennedy Center Expansion Project "Building the Future" Capital Campaign

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The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts today announced additional major gifts for the Kennedy Center Expansion Project, the institution’s first new construction since opening in 1971. To date, $135.9 million has been raised under the Kennedy Center’s "Building the Future" campaign, which will fund the Center’s Expansion Project. After surpassing the initial fundraising goal of $125 million, the Center also announced today an increased Capital Campaign goal of $175 million. Michael F. Neidorff, Treasurer of the Board of Trustees, serves as the Co-Chair of this campaign, which began in 2013.

"The Expansion Project is another important step in fulfilling President Kennedy’s vision of furthering the appreciation of culture among all people," stated Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein, who also serves as Co-Chair of the campaign. "On behalf of a grateful nation, thanks to Boeing, Jacquie Mars, Stephen and Christine Schwarzman, our seven $5 million donors, and the many others who are giving so generously in support of expanding the scope of our national cultural center."

Full Press Release

09/17/2015 The Kennedy Center Receives $20 Million Capital Campaign Gift from Boeing

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(WASHINGTON)—David M. Rubenstein, Chairman of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and Deborah F. Rutter, Kennedy Center President, today announced a $20 million capital campaign gift from Boeing, becoming the exclusive corporate underwriter of the Center's Expansion Project. Boeing Chairman Jim McNerney surprised Rubenstein with the news during a Q&A onstage at the Economic Club of Washington.

 "Boeing is a true friend of the Kennedy Center," said Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein. "This remarkable gift will help ensure that the expansion project achieves its goal of making the Kennedy Center more accessible, versatile, and compelling to future generations. We are deeply grateful."

"Boeing is proud to build on our long-standing support of the Kennedy Center, one of the iconic landmarks of our nation's capital and a national cultural treasure and international center of artistic excellence," said McNerney. "This expansion will help the Kennedy Center educate and inspire more people from across America and the globe through its programs and performances."

 "We are overjoyed and appreciative of this gift, and we are fortunate to have the leadership of Jim McNerney," said Kennedy Center President Deborah F. Rutter. "This is a transformative project for the Kennedy Center. The new spaces provide opportunities for in-depth immersion of audiences in the creative process, furthering the cultural mission of this living memorial to President Kennedy."

Full Press Release

05/7/2015 The Kennedy Center announces Updated Design for Expansion Project

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(WASHINGTON)—The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts today announced an updated design for its Expansion Project. The re-envisioned plan is comprised of three land-based pavilions on the Kennedy Center's South Plaza and a newly imagined pedestrian bridge that will connect the Potomac River waterfront to the Kennedy Center. With this design, the Kennedy Center will add more flexible performance and education space, improve visitor access, and gain a more effective connection to the Potomac River.

The update to the project includes a third land-based pavilion—a highly convertible, intimate venue that will serve as a performance space, workshop, patron gathering space, and café. Large windows and a retractable wall offer an opportunity for visitors to witness artists in the creative process within the bright and open space. The pavilion offers space to afford artists-inresidence the ability to develop new works that could later be performed in the Center's larger theaters.

The Kennedy Center Expansion is intended to be a place where visitors can more actively engage with artists, while also creating new and much-needed rehearsal, education, and flexible indoor and outdoor event and performance spaces. A pedestrian bridge connecting the South Plaza to the Rock Creek Parkway pedestrian path provides additional accessibility to the Kennedy Center and expands its relationship to the river.

Full Press Release

12/4/2014 Vice President Joe Biden Delivers Remarks at Ceremonial Groundbreaking

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Video: The Kennedy Center Expansion Project Groundbreaking Ceremony

On Thursday, December 4, the Kennedy Center broke ground on the first major expansion in its history at a special ceremony. The ceremonial groundbreaking celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Center's original groundbreaking in 1964 and included remarks by Vice President Joe Biden, Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein, Kennedy Center President Deborah F. Rutter, Kennedy Center Trustee Rose Kennedy Schlossberg, and architect Steven Holl. Marking this special occasion, David Rubenstein used the same gold-plated shovel used to break ground for the Kennedy Center on December 2, 1964 by President Lyndon Baines Johnson.

Kennedy Center President Deborah F. Rutter led the remarks, stating, "This historic expansion of the Kennedy Center dramatically advances our relationships with visitors, audiences, and artists, fully realizing the mission of the Kennedy Center. That mission, to which we aspire every day, demands that the Kennedy Center be at the center of cultural life in our nation; it expects that we reach as broadly and as deeply as we can to bring the very best of the arts to the citizens of this great country, and it compels us to honor the implicit joy that defines art."

Rose Kennedy Schlossberg, a Kennedy Center Trustee and granddaughter to President Kennedy, stated during the ceremony, "My grandparents believed that American civilization had come of age, and they transformed the White House into a stage for our nation's greatest performing artists. They recognized that in order to demonstrate our full commitment to freedom, democracy, and the human spirit, our nation's capital needed a world-class performing arts center. After my grandfather's death, my grandmother, and my great aunts and uncles worked tirelessly to build and sustain this Center, and my generation is proud to continue their commitment to excellence."

Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein, who is contributing $50 million as the Project's lead gift, stated "I appreciate greatly the work of so many who brought us to a groundbreaking today, and hope that we can complete what we are starting today on May 29, 2017, the 100th birthday of President Kennedy. What we are starting today is not just a new building but a transformation of the Kennedy Center into a performing arts center ready for the artist and patron needs of the 21st century."

12/3/14 Vice President Joe Biden to Deliver Remarks at Ceremonial Groundbreaking

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The Kennedy Center will break ground for its Expansion Project on Thursday, December 4 at 10:30 a.m.

Vice President Joe Biden, Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein, Kennedy Center President Deborah F. Rutter, Kennedy Center Trustee Rose Kennedy Schlossberg, and architect Steven Holl will take part in a ceremonial groundbreaking of the Kennedy Center's new Expansion Project on Thursday, December 4 at 10:30 a.m. After the groundbreaking ceremony, Steven Holl and Chris McVoy of Steven Holl Architects will give a brief architectural overview of the project. A model of the project along with a display of architectural renderings will be on view in the Grand Foyer.

The general public is invited to join this historic occasion by attending a free livestream broadcast at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage North. Access to the event is through the Hall of States entrance. The public may also view the livestream online at kennedy-center.org/expansion

11/25/14 Ceremonial Groundbreaking on December 4

The public is invited to join this historic event at a livestream on the Millennium Stage or watch online.

On a brisk day in December 1964, President Lyndon Baines Johnson broke ground for the construction of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Now almost 50 years later to the date, the Kennedy Center will break ground for its Expansion Project on Thursday, December 4 at 10:30 a.m. Speakers at the ceremonial groundbreaking include Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein, Kennedy Center President Deborah F. Rutter, Kennedy Center Trustee Rose Kennedy Schlossberg, and architect Steven Holl. After the groundbreaking ceremony, Steven Holl and Chris McVoy of Steven Holl Architects will give a brief architectural overview of the project. A model of the project along with a display of architectural renderings will be on view in the Grand Foyer.

The general public is invited to join this historic occasion by attending a free livestream broadcast at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage North. Access to the event is through the Hall of States entrance. The public may also view the livestream online at kennedy-center.org/expansion

10/7/14 Public Review of Environmental Assessment

The NPS and NCPA present the Environmental Assessment for public comment on Oct. 22, 2014.

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (Kennedy Center) is proposing to expand its existing building, designed by architect Edward Durell Stone, to provide approximately 60,000 square feet of additional space. Components of the project partially fall within the Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway (RCPP), which is under the jurisdiction of the National Mall and Memorial Parks (NAMA), a unit of the National Park Service System, a unit administered by the National Park Service (NPS).

The purpose of the proposed project is to expand the facilities of the Kennedy Center by adding space for classrooms, rehearsal rooms, and event spaces in a dedicated area. Additionally, the Kennedy Center envisions improving greater multimodal access to and from the Kennedy Center, NAMA, the Rock Creek Paved Recreation Trail, the Potomac River waterfront, and surrounding vicinity. The project is needed because the Kennedy Center, with the largest performing arts education initiative in the country, contains no dedicated classrooms, a limited number of rehearsal rooms, and no dedicated event space. Furthermore, there is not direct bike/pedestrian access to and from the Kennedy Center to the east, or southeastward to the Rock Creek Paved Recreation Trail, NAMA, and the Potomac River. This lack of a direct and convenient path limits visitor access between the Kennedy Center, NAMA, the Rock Creek Paved Recreation Trail, and the Potomac River waterfront and also creates a disconnect between the Kennedy Center, which is the United States' living memorial to President John F. Kennedy, and the other Presidential memorials found within the National Mall.

The EA is being made available to the public for review for a period of 30 days from October 9, 2014 through November 10, 2014. A meeting will be held at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on Wednesday, October 22, 2014. The meeting will be an "open house" format with comment sheets will be provided at the meeting.

More information may be found here.

12/5/13 Additional Funding of $40 Million Announced

New gifts bring the total to $90 million in the Capital Campaign.

David M. Rubenstein, Chairman of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, announced on Dec. 5, 2013, an additional $40 million in gifts for the Kennedy Center expansion project, including a significant leadership pledge from Michael and Noémi Neidorff and the Centene Charitable Foundation. Mr. Neidorff and David Rubenstein serve as co-chairs of the expansion project's capital campaign. With these new commitments and the initial $50 million pledge from Mr. Rubenstein, $90 million has been raised for the Kennedy Center's $125 million campaign. As previously announced, the design and construction costs for the expansion project will be paid for entirely with private funds.

"I am proud the capital campaign has been extremely successful over the past several months," stated Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein. "The generosity of the Kennedy Center's broad donor base will allow us to fully fund the project in the coming months. I thank Michael Neidorff for the hard work he has done as co-chair of the capital campaign. His generosity sets a wonderful example for others to follow."

Kennedy Center Treasurer Michael Neidorff is the co-chair of the expansion project's capital campaign. He stated, "It is an honor and pleasure to be chairing the Kennedy Center's capital campaign. I am profoundly grateful to the remarkable philanthropists who, through their generous participation, will enable the institution to enhance its facility while maintaining the highest level of artistic excellence."

1/29/13 Rubenstein Pledges $50 Million Lead Gift

Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein will donate $50 million toward the design and construction of the new building.

On Jan. 29, 2013, it was announced Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein will donate $50 million toward the design and construction of the new building. This generous lead gift is among the largest ever given to a federally-connected nonprofit organization. The design and construction costs for the expansion project will be paid for entirely with private funds.

"I am pleased to pledge these funds as the lead gift to the Kennedy Center expansion project and encourage others to donate to this project," stated Mr. Rubenstein. "As the federal budget tightens, I hope more Americans will consider including nonprofit federal entities in their own philanthropy as well." Mr. Rubenstein's other philanthropic endeavors include major gifts to the National Archives, the Washington Monument, and the Smithsonian Institution.

1/29/13 Expansion Project Announced

The Kennedy Center will expand its facilities to add Education, Public Access, and Rehearsal Space.

David M. Rubenstein, Chairman of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, announced on Jan. 29, 2013, an expansion project to be constructed south of the existing facility. The project will include rehearsal space as well as dedicated classroom space and multipurpose rooms for the Center's extensive arts education and arts management education programs. Public access spaces will include gardens, an outdoor video wall upon which simulcast performances and other multimedia events may be projected, and an outdoor performance space. The expansion will be designed by Steven Holl and senior partner Chris McVoy of Steven Holl Architects.

"I am proud to announce the selection of acclaimed Steven Holl Architects for the Kennedy Center expansion project and look forward to working with one of the foremost architects of our time," stated Mr. Rubenstein. "Steven's wonderful concept will create a strong visual presence that bolsters the Center's prominence as the national cultural center, while maintaining its unique presence among Washington's iconic landmarks."

Steven Holl Architects was unanimously selected by the Kennedy Center board of trustees to design the project. Mr. Holl remarked, "It is a great honor to design the extension to the Kennedy Center, a ‘Living Memorial.' In that spirit ours is part of a vital architecture, providing much needed rehearsal space, and classrooms with natural light and ventilation."