Photo courtesy of LBCC: (Left to right) Long Beach Community College District Board of Trustees President Jeff Kellogg; Performing Arts Department Chair Cathy Crane; Board of Trustees Member Dr. Virginia Baxter; Interim Dean for the School of Social Science, Business and Arts Lisa Orr; LBCC Superintendent-President Reagan F. Romali; Board of Trustees Member Vivian Malauulu; and Board of Trustees Member Doug Otto.
Long Beach City College (LBCC) executives, Board of Trustees members, students and staff celebrated the groundbreaking for the $29-million renovation of the Building J auditorium at the College’s Liberal Arts Campus on Thursday, the college announced this morning.
“Long Beach City College is celebrating our 90th anniversary. We’re extremely committed to academic excellence in a variety of ways including providing our students state-of-the-art learning facilities,” said LBCC Superintendent-President Reagan F. Romali in a statement. “When we return here for our grand re-opening, we will be standing in front of a renovated auditorium that will look very similar from the front, but will be far improved inside. And it’s going to be so much more than just the LBCC auditorium. It will be a premier venue for theater, dance, award-winning shows, and lecture series.”
Home to the Performing Arts Department, the auditorium will be updated with a new dance studio, air conditioning, new visual display systems, an upgraded lobby, costume shop, green room and more, according to the release.
The auditorium boasts a storied past, having hosted famous performers and budding artists since it opened in 1957. Musicians from Dave Brubeck to Kenny G., actors including Val Kilmer and Vincent Price, singer Shirley Jones, and speakers including Dr. Cornel West and Van Jones have all performed there.
The project, by SVA Architects and general contractor Novus Construction, to be overseen by the Cordoba Corporation, will be paid for with Measure E funds and Measure LB Bonds approved by voters for renovation and repairs at LBCC’s Pacific Coast Campus and Liberal Arts Campus, according to the release.