Sunday, October 17, 2010

A big hole in Pasadena

Next year, repertory theater troupe A Noise Within (the name is from a stage direction in Hamlet) will be moving out of the old Masonic temple on Glendale's Brand Boulevard that has served as its home for the past 19 seasons.

Construction site for A Noise Within's new theater in East Pasadena.

Their new state-of-the-art theater is under construction now at 3360 East Foothill Boulevard in East Pasadena, on the site of the Stuart Company Building, the erstwhile live-work-play campus of a major pharmaceutical firm designed in 1956 by Edward Durell Stone, architect of Radio City Music Hall and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

Façade of Edward Durell Stone's 1956 Stuart Company Building.

The original building, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, was converted into Mad Men–worth mid-century apartments, The Stuart at Sierra Madre Villa, a couple of years ago, with additional new units added behind the original building.

Rendering of the new theater exterior.

While the current Glendale theater has a certain decrepit charm, the new space, designed by Los Angeles–based John Berry Architects, will use Stone's original concrete screen but will rise three stories, with new parts being fabricated to match the building's existing façade. The theater will also provide more backstage space, education facilities and a library.

Construction is in the hands of Matt Construction, who have worked on projects such as the Skirball Cultural Center and the most recent renovation of the Hollywood Bowl.

Rendering of the new theater interior.

I recently attended A Noise Within's season opening in Glendale, a stunning production of Shakespeare's "problem play" Measure for Measure, and was blown away. I can only imagine what the new facility will do to enhance their talent and vision.


  1. Thanks for this terrific piece! Please get in touch if you'd like to be on our press list for updates about the project. Would have sent a private email but couldn't find contact info her.
    Laura Stegman
    PR [at] A Noise Within dot org

    P.S. You have Edward Durell Stone's first name as Lawrence in the photo caption, might want to fix. Also, Direll has one r.

  2. sorry, speaking of typos... meant "here" not "her"

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