Bluebarn Theatre

A new arts hub in a rapidly changing district

  • Type Cultural
  • Location Omaha, Nebraska
  • Area 14,000 sf
  • Status Completed
  • Date 2015

BlueBarn Theatre translates the upstart scrappiness and risk-taking ethos of its namesake theatre company into built form.  The project began with a donated plot of land and an open minded developer.  The theatre anchors a multi-part urban scheme which includes a mixed-use residential building and a public park.  BlueBarn is a hybrid proscenium, black box, and outdoor theatre.  Its materiality is explicit: burnished unit masonry, weathering steel sheet metal cladding, and a custom fabricated exterior of welded rebar and sheet metal siding. Programmed in collaboration with local community and contractors, we commissioned artists Michael Morgan, Jim Woodfill, Daniel Toberer, and Chris Kemp to design and build integrated functional building elements.

To the south: Boxcar 10, a mixed-use building containing a restaurant and loft-apartments. To the west: ‘Green in the City’ a public open space designed by el dorado, inc with Urban Rain Design.

Primary materials include burnished unit masonry, weathering steel sheet metal cladding, and exposed rebar screen.

West elevation.

Custom hybrid cladding system of welded rebar is held in front of corten sheet metal siding.

Min Day and the BLUEBARN commissioned four artists to customize the theatre lobby.

Brick vestibule by Michael Morgan. Wood, heavy timbers, and custom sinks by Daniel Toberer

Interior lighting and built-in furniture by Jim Woodfill.

Upstage door by Chris Kemp.

Project Awards

2017 AIA Central States Honor Award for Architecture

2017 AIA Nebraska Honor Award for Architectural Detail

2016 AIA Central States Merit Award for Architectural Detail (Rebar Wall)

2016 AIA Nebraska Honor Award for Architecture

2016 AIA San Francisco Special Commendation for Urban Design

2016 ACSA Faculty Design Award

2016 International Illuminance Award, Special Citation for Outdoor Lighting Design, Illuminating Engineering Society

2016 International Merit Award, Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (lighting designer: Morrissey Engineering)

2017 ACEC Nebraska Engineering Excellence Awards, Merit (MEP & lighting, Morrissey Engineering)


Featured on Dezeen.

Listed by Slate as one of 8 projects in The Best Things America Built in 2016.

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