Glendale Community College, David Viar Performing and Media Arts Center Glendale, California

A collaborative, cross-disciplinary arts and media
center crowned by a versatile recital hall.

  • Location

    Glendale, California

  • Sector


  • Service


  • Client

    Glendale Community College District

  • Status

    In Design

  • Size

    72,000 sf

The Viar Center is envisioned to be a collaborative and cross-disciplinary environment, connecting multiple areas of the campus and creating a central arts courtyard gathering space. Built on a sloped campus, the multi-level building creatively establishes connections and provides accessible entries into the building from three distinct sides of the campus. It will become a new central hub for the arts on campus, providing additional college amenities and student collaboration space. The building elevates Glendale Community College’s mission-style aesthetic through authentic materials, proportions, and details.

The three-story Performing and Media Arts Center will house the College’s music, dance, and media arts departments, as well as active learning classrooms, an innovation center, and a new campus conference facility. The central 200-seat recital hall is an intimate room with adaptability and sufficient acoustical volume to support soloists, ensembles, and the school’s 50-piece chamber orchestra. Other spaces include an innovation center, music classrooms, class labs, a world-class music recording studio, TV and film studios, dance studios, and a film screening room. A campus conference room will accommodate events for 250 people, offering flexibility for various functions and events, including board meetings, banquets, and public rentals.

With a focus on events and performance the Viar Center is a hub of activity both inside and out.  The site design promotes passive and active engagement by means of its outdoor amphitheater adjacent to the Innovation Center.   There is also an expansive upper level courtyard event space which provides the Conference Center with the premiere pre-function space on campus.  When not in use for events and performances this Center’s courtyard is the perfect location to hang out and collaborate with classmates.

The 200 seat Recital Hall provides a high level of flexibility for individual and group performances for both the campus and the Glendale community. As a reflection the Hall’s importance as the premiere performance venue on campus the design of the buildings enclosure provides a sculpted geometrical form that sits in contrast to the mission-style aesthetic of the surrounding buildings.  Clad in a reflective bronze metal panel the volume also helps to activate the secondary courtyard space between the new Viar Center and the existing Verdugo Gymnasium.