Staging-A-Comeback: Creative solutions for theaters and performing arts centers as they reopen.

"For centuries theater has brought us together and now together we will find a way to bring theater back."

WBA Team

At Wilson Butler Architects, we create experiences through an engaging process with an eye for the theatrical. We push creative boundaries and create social spaces people want to experience time and time again.  Qualities such as these are needed now more than ever as theaters, performing arts centers, and communal gatherings across the world have been shuttered due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The arts are critical to our well-being, and have been for thousands of years. As architects, it is our role to design places where the community can feel safe, feel welcomed, and enjoy themselves. These beliefs drive us to explore and curate operational and design solutions to help make public performance spaces safer as they reopen, while contributing to their long-term sustainability.

Please email for a copy of the Staging-A-Comeback Sneak Peek: A collection of creative ideas to help theaters reopen safely.

22-3-16 Staging a Comeback Sneak Peek Final (Spread)



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Staging-A-Comeback has been recognized with two 2022 SMPS Boston Communications Awards in the categories of Social Media & Best-In-house Design (Small firm). believe that staging a successful comeback will come down to three important values:

1) UNDERSTANDING of the situation and the protocols in place.

Designers, venue owners, and patrons will each need to have an understanding of the public health climate we will be opening into. Each of us must do our best to follow guidance from public health organizations, and local governments. As designers, part of our job will be making that guidance clear and implementing it properly in the spaces we collaborate on.

2) PATIENCE in response to adjusting schedules, performances, ticket changes, new routines, and with the people around us.

We will all need to get used to a new way of operating in our entertainment spaces as society opens up again. This means we will occasionally make mistakes. Schedules may get delayed, performances may change, tickets might need to be refunded or shows re-scheduled. We may have to accommodate new requirements when entering venues. Most of all, some of the people around us may not get the message. It is important that we harbor patience and understanding for each other as we navigate this crisis, and its recovery, together

3) OPTIMISM for the future and for innovating new ways for performing arts to engage with the audience within a safer space.

If we are going to move forward together, we need to believe that we can come out of this even better than we were before. Hardship can open the door for creativity, inventiveness and the confidence that comes from perseverance. With this in mind, those in the performing arts can find new and exciting way to engage with audiences that will prove value long after we’ve healed from the Coronavirus pandemic.

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