Prior Performing Arts Center to Welcome the Campus and Local Communities During Community Day

Photo by Brett Beyer

Professor Kyle Frisina named as the center’s interim director for its inaugural year

The College of the Holy Cross will welcome the Holy Cross and Worcester communities to the newly completed Prior Performing Arts Center for a special Community Day event starting at 1 p.m. on Sept. 24. The event, which will be open to the public, will feature student and professional performers, food trucks and the opportunity to tour the space.

An incubator for multidisciplinary learning and creativity, the 84,000-square-foot, $110 million performing arts center includes Luth Concert Hall, a 400-seat proscenium theater; Boroughs Theatre, a 200-seat flexible studio space; and the relocated Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Art Gallery.

Designed by New York-based Diller Scofidio + Renfro, a design studio whose practice integrates architecture, the visual arts, and the performing arts, the center is in active use as of the start of the Fall 2022 semester.

“We’re delighted to preview our extraordinary Prior Performing Arts Center with the Holy Cross and Worcester communities,” President Vincent D. Rougeau said. “The center is a reflection of the College’s belief that creative and performing arts enhance learning across all academic disciplines and provide opportunities to experience together the wonders of beauty, discovery and reflection. It will augment Worcester’s thriving arts community and further enrich our region in powerful and meaningful ways.”

Kyle Frisina, assistant professor of English, has been selected as interim director for the center’s inaugural year. She joined the Holy Cross Department of English in 2020 after receiving her Ph.D. in English language and literature and American culture from the University of Michigan; her research examines the relationship between theatricality and civic life.

In addition to her scholarly and pedagogical expertise in areas related to the mission of the performing arts center, Frisina brings to this position extensive experience in arts administration, including roles as director of play development at Second Stage Theater and associate producer at New York Stage and Film.

“I am honored to step into the role of interim director for the Prior Performing Arts Center,” Frisina said. “The center grants us extraordinary opportunities to amplify the centrality of the performing and creative arts to the liberal arts experience; foster interdisciplinary learning and scholarship; attract dynamic students, faculty, staff, audiences and artists to the College; strengthen our connections with other communities, both local and global; and imagine a bold, creative future for Holy Cross. I look forward to working with colleagues across campus to lay the foundation for the center’s work in years to come.”

“As we begin this inaugural year, Professor Frisina’s expansive academic vision, commitment to the values of the College and impressive background in the performing arts will foster an inclusive and collaborative foundation for the performing arts center, so that it might enrich the lives of all members of the College community and beyond,” said Ann Marie Leshkowich, interim provost and dean of the College.