Off-campus UMass Amherst users: To download campus access theses, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your UMass Amherst user name and password.
Non-UMass Amherst users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this thesis through interlibrary loan.
Master of Architecture (M.Arch.)
Year Degree Awarded
Month Degree Awarded
Performance space, social space
While large performance spaces fulfill important cultural, civic, architectural and artistic needs, few performing artists begin their careers playing in large halls. As in professional sports, the “minor leagues” play a critical role for professional performing artists by allowing them to both reach out to new audiences and hone their performance skills. Niche and emerging performing artists, therefore, rely on small performance spaces as their principal means exercising their craft. In addition to size, one important difference between large and small performance spaces is the criticality of the social experience. Small performance spaces are often informal, with entertainment being secondary to social functions - as in the case of the neighborhood coffee house, bar or restaurant that offers periodic performances in addition to their standard fare. The hybridization of social and performance functions offers a “ready-made” audience for niche and emerging performing artists, engendering the new and random audience-performer connections that are so critical to nurturing performing artists and the performing arts in general. The disparate social and attentive programmatic functions of these hybrid spaces offer a challenge to architects and designers. Providing a hybrid social/performance space that is optimized for niche and emerging performing artists is the central design problem that this thesis seeks to address.
Advisor(s) or Committee Chair