AIA OH Honor Award for The Otto M. Budig Theater

GBBN’s design for the Otto M. Budig Theater has won an American Institute of Architects (AIA) Ohio 2018 Honor Award, the highest distinction given by the AIA at the state level.  Home to the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company (one of the few theaters in the country to have performed Shakespeare’s entire canon of 38 plays) the Otto M. Budig Theater helps audiences, neighbors, students, and the community, “engage with the stage.” The theater is the only project in Cincinnati to receive an AIA-Ohio Honor award for 2018.

The Otto M. Budig Theater has quickly become a community anchor thanks to a new bar, flexible spaces for rehearsing and events, opportunities to peek behind the scenes, and a 250 seat auditorium that puts audiences within 20 feet of the stage.

“I think the final project is a wonderful combination of everything we wanted artistically and delivered a better experience that we imagined for our patrons as well,” says Brian Isaac Phillips, Producing Artistic Director, Cincinnati Shakespeare Company.

“Cultural centers can be a real force in urban revitalization,” says GBBN CEO Matthew Schottelkotte. “We’re thrilled to see how this new theater, in just one year, has already helped Cincinnati Shakespeare Company achieve their original goals and imagine new ones.”

Comments from the jury:

“The design emphasizes a blurring between the interior and exterior at the lobby by placing the majority of transparency at the street corner, activating the street experience. Views out of the building at the second level also reinforce this civic connection to place. The material palette reinforces the buzz of the lobby by providing a contrast between the pre-function zones and the black box of the theatre. A very well-conceived and executed project.”

Other team members included consultants Schuler Shook (theatre planning), Kierkegaard Associates (acoustician), Schaefer (structural engineer), Bayer Becker (civil engineer), Heapy Engineering (MEP), Messer (contractor).You can read more about our work on this project here.

Read more about how cultural venues help revitalize cities here. And check out the AIA Honor Award video here.