The Student News Site of Central Oregon Community College

The Broadside

The Student News Site of Central Oregon Community College

The Broadside

The Student News Site of Central Oregon Community College

The Broadside

Bend Performing arts center looks promising

Eric Ercanbrack


The Broadside



There’s a new theater in town, and it’s not like your typical community theater.

After two years in the making, Innovation Theatre Works finds a permanent home with the opening of the Bend Performing Arts Center.

The founders of the center, Brad Hills and Chris Rennolds, are the minds behind Innovation Theatre Works. Innovations produced the Frank Sinatra tribute My Way, and Driving Miss Daisy, which played at the Tower Theatre.

“Bend has never had a performing arts center.” Hills says, sitting in the old church that is soon to be the theater.

Located above the northbound Reed Market Road on-ramp, where Reed Market meets Division Street, the theatre is projected to seat between 175 and 190 people in a “black box” performance space.

“We also have plenty of space for what we need to do in terms of classrooms and workshops,”says Hills. According to Hills and Rennolds, the center will house community events like staged readings, open mics, sketch comedies, new play workshops and will also host a gallery space, coffee bar, and a publicly accessible performing arts library in addition to regular professional performances.

“We also plan to rent out the extra rooms for a non-profit art’s incubator space,” Hills states as he walks by two rooms being painted by volunteers.

The founders of Innovation Theatre Works have a colorful background in theatre.  Hills, having founded four professional theatres, and Rennolds, with her twenty years of acting experience, will make sure the new center isn’t just a community theatre.

“Innovation Theatre Works is a professional theatre, and all Innovation Theatre will do is professional theatre,” Hills says.

The Bend Performing Arts Center’s opening is just around the corner with the first of what Hills calls New Innovations, a monthly staged reading series spotlighting new plays, beginning on March 8th.

With the center having so many opportunities to get involved in theatre, there is much anticipation for the Performing Arts Center. On their website, Hills expresses simplistically the center’s main ambition:

“Our goal is to create an arts space the entire community can participate in.”

 You may contact Eric Ercanbrack at [email protected]

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Broadside Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *