New Rob and Judy Gardner Laboratory Theatre Lab Theatre Lobby Rendering

In the fall of 2019, the $70 million Nobel Hall renovation connected Nobel Hall and Schaefer Fine Arts Center with a brand new LABORATORY THEATRE—reimagining performance in the 21st century by promoting cutting edge collaboration and innovation between theatre, dance, and sciences. By pairing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) with the Arts, Gustavus joins the growing STEAM movement, which underscores the essential role of creativity and innovation in solving the challenges of our world. In the true spirit of our interdisciplinary liberal arts approach, the laboratory theatre enables students to experiment with new modes of creation encouraging them to perform, choreograph, design, devise, direct, and write for the future. Features of the new space include:

  • Flexibility for classes: accessible lab space specifically created for theatre and dance classes focusing on performance, directing, dance, design, and technical production.
  • Flexibility for performances: creative and adaptable space for nearly every style of performance. The venue exposes students and audiences to a wider variety of performance practices.
  • Cutting edge technology: much like the sciences, new technology drives the tools we use to create our art. This space provides state-of-the-art tools and equipment to stay on the leading edge of education and training for the next generations of Gustie artists.
  • Additional spaces include a scene shop, dressing rooms, costume, hair and make-up room, and new dye vat for bulk dyeing of costumes.

The Evan and Evelyn Anderson Theatre

Anderson Theatre, Gustavus Adolphus College
Designed by the renowned architectural firm of Hammel, Green and Abrahamson, the 270-seat Anderson Theatre has been called "striking and comfortable," "one of the best college playhouses in the state": "a thrust stage covered in dark brown wood...almost identical in shape to the Guthrie's. Dark wood also covers the auditorium walls and ceilings." Boasting state-of-the-art light and sound equipment, the theatre is used for both theatre and dance performances. 

Kresge Dance StudioKresge Studio

Featuring a beautiful, sprung dance floor, the Kresge Studio is used for classes, rehearsals, and performances of student choreography.

Small Dance Studio

The small dance studio, also known as Li'l Krez, is a small studio featuring a sprung floor which is used as a warm-up and small group rehearsal space.

Black BoxThe Black Box

Home to student-directed productions throughout the year, the fifty-seat Black Box serves also as a primary rehearsal space and as the studio for acting and directing classes.


Scenery and Costume Shops

  Well-equipped scenery and costume shops provide working laboratories for students of technical theatre. It is here that the scenery, properties, and costumes for theatre and dance performances are constructed.
Scene Shop Scene Shop Gustavus Costume Shop-2 Gustavus Costume Shop-3