By renovating the historic Warner Grand Theater, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra will establish a dedicated performance center and a first-class patron experience. The Symphony selected Kahler Slater to lead them in accomplishing their mission of transforming the theater to a live performance venue and enable growth for the organization.
Built in 1930, the Warner Grand Theater was originally designed for film, rather than live performances. Therefore, the complex renovation includes moving the theater’s terracotta rear wall to make room for a larger stage to accommodate the size of the orchestra. In addition, the project will integrate an adjacent building that will serve as an expanded lobby and gathering place, soloist rooms and enhanced elevators for full patron accessibility. Goals for the project include celebrating MSO’s rich history as well as leverage the renovation to spur economic development in the area. The MSO was approved by the State of Wisconsin for over $8 million in historic tax credits, and recently received conditional approval for Federal historic tax credits, as well.
Once completed, the Symphony’s new home will accommodate 1,750 guests and deliver memorable experience to visitors. The project is scheduled for completion prior to the 2020 symphony season.