March 30, 2021 at 11:15am
Dane Lisser

MU recognized for completion of Center for Theatre & Dance

Millikin University was named the recipient of the 2020 Decatur Regional Chamber of Commerce Award for Outstanding Development on March 25, 2021. The Outstanding Development Award goes to the organization who has grown their business in the last 12 months and created a positive impact on the local community. Millikin was recognized for the completion of its new Center for Theatre & Dance.

The awards are traditionally announced during the Annual Chamber Awards Luncheon but were announced via social media due to COVID-19 restrictions. The awards are held to honor member businesses, agencies and individuals for their outstanding performances, quality customer service and business distinctiveness.

Megan Clark, director of Global Supply Chain O2C at Tate & Lyle, presented the Outstanding Development Award to Millikin President Dr. Jim Reynolds.

Opened in August 2020, Millikin University's Center for Theatre & Dance is an architectural marvel located at the former site of the Richards Treat University Center. The $29 million project, which broke ground in May 2018, features a 260-seat flexible theatre, including an orchestra pit, balcony and tech gallery with a tension wire grid. The center was designed by Decatur-based design firm BLDD.

The center features lighting and sound labs, a costume studio, a costume classroom, collaboration spaces and offices and support facilities for current staff with room for growth. It includes four acting studios, two dance studios, two design classrooms and practice rooms as well as all-new modern theatre equipment and LED lights.

The Center for Theatre & Dance is a centralized location for creativity to be cultivated, fostered and displayed, and provides a venue for Millikin performing arts to delight, inform and inspire audiences. Mary Black, director of the Millikin School of Theatre & Dance, says students are able to "learn performance, directing, design, production and management in all new spaces equipped with the latest technology."

"It features new studios and labs for design and production, including new costume, wigs, dye, and crafts spaces, new CADD and design studios, and a new lighting and sound lab with multiple different consoles," Black said.

Gifts have been made to support fundraising efforts by a community of generous alumni, community leaders and the Board of Trustees. For more information on Millikin's Center for Theatre & Dance, visit

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