Huntington Avenue Theatre Project

Our Investment
About the Architects: Bruner/Cott & Associates
About the Commercial Developers: QMG Huntington LLC
Project Press

“We will create a space where people come to feel more alive, more engaged, more fulfilled. We will immerse patrons in the creative energy of our city. It will be unlike any other theatre experience in the country or any other cultural venue in the region.” — Peter DuBois, Norma Jean Calderwood Artistic Director 

The Huntington Theatre Company is embracing dramatic change.

We are transforming our historic home on the Avenue of the Arts to increase our capacity for meaningful people-to-people engagement and vibrant exchange of ideas through performance, programs, and collaboration.

To accomplish this vision, we are restoring the lustre of the Huntington Avenue Theatre, an architectural treasure originally built in 1925 as the nation's first nonprofit theatre, and infusing it with 21st century amenities driven by inspired creative thought.

We are expanding to create a state-of-the-art, public destination housed in a new contemporary wing that will be transparent from the street. This welcoming, modern, and expansive convening space will have its own flexible performance venue, as well as a cafe, balcony, bar, event space, and comfortable seating areas.

New Audience Engagement Center 1st floor, with the theatre complex entrance, a cafe, ticketing services, and a ramp leading to the renovated historic theatre

New Audience Engagement Center 2nd floor, "Boston's Living Room," with a flexible performance space, a bar, and a balcony overlooking Huntington Avenue

Our new Huntington Avenue Theatre complex will be an inspiring and unifying venue for theatre, education, creative thought, and social connection: a cabaret, a hive of activity, a welcoming place to be.


Our Investment

For nearly four decades, the Huntington has played to an audience of over 3.5 million, presented more than 200 plays (18 of which went on to Broadway or Off Broadway), and served more than half a million students, community members, and other cultural organizations. Building on the Calderwood Pavilion’s success in reinvigorating the South End, we are now investing $100 million to create a new center of gravity in the city on Huntington Avenue.

This campaign allows us to be a force for change and inclusivity, amplify our cultural impact, and provide for following:


Restoring and updating the historic architecture of the Huntington Avenue Theatre, a nearly century-old venue:

  • integrating the modern amenities and comfort our patrons desire
  • creating a backstage that harnesses contemporary theatrical technology
  • recreating a striking historical veranda on the first floor

Creating a dynamic audience engagement center, transparent from the street, to serve as the Huntington Avenue Theatre’s new entrance. This spacious, fully accessible, multi-story complex will incorporate:

  • patron services and ticketing
  • a café — open daily to the public
  • an expansive second floor “living room” that will double as an intimate performance and event venue
  • a balcony off the second floor of the new wing

 Establishing a new Production Center (completed 2017), a dedicated education space, and administrative offices


  • Expanding the scope of our theatrical work
  • Broadening and deepening our education programs
  • Fostering more opportunities for human connections
  • Engaging and nurturing new playwrights, actors, and artistic companies


  • Increasing our endowment to safeguard our future
  • Expanding artistic capacity and maintaining our facilities
  • Operating with long-term sustainability

View the full Campaign brochure


About the Architects: Bruner/Cott & Associates

The Huntington has engaged Bruner/Cott & Associates as architects for the Huntington Avenue Theatre project. Known for award-winning designs for seminal projects such as MASS MoCA and the Boston University School of Law, Bruner/Cott has a reputation for thoughtful design that celebrates the heritage and craftmanship of the past while optimizing resources for sustainable futures.

The Huntington and Bruner/Cott are currently making plans to renovate the Huntington Avenue Theatre, which in turn will expand the Huntington’s services to its audiences, artists, and the Greater Boston community.

“Bruner/Cott has a great track record of working with arts groups and of reinvigorating older buildings. I expect that they will be able to bring out the beauty of our historic theatre while also creating vibrant, new social spaces.” — David Epstein, Chairman, Huntington Theatre Company Board of Trustees

Bruner/Cott & Associates is dedicated to enhancing quality of life, economic vigor, and sense of community through thoughtful, sustainable design for cultural, educational, and commercial clients nationwide. They believe the most effective design solutions derive from a creative interpretation of place, culture, program, and responsibility to our planet. They see architecture as a site-specific art rather than an imposed style, thoughtfully considering each project within the context of its mission and its community.



About the Commercial Developers: QMG Huntington LLC

Local development company, QMG Huntington LLC, led by John Matteson, purchased the BU Theatre complex in May 2016. The BPDA's approval of the Huntington Avenue Project puts in motion a donation by QMG Huntington LLC of the historic Huntington Avenue Theatre and its support wing to the Huntington Theatre Company for its ownership in perpetuity.

QMG Huntington LLC will also provide the Huntington Theatre Company with a new, two-story, cultural space, expanding the Huntington Avenue Theatre at the base of QMG’s apartment building, with a 100-year lease for the price of $1.00 (one dollar). The Huntington is responsible for outfitting the new contemporary space, which will serve as the Huntington Avenue Theatre’s new entrance and will provide public amenities including increased gathering spaces and an expansive second floor lobby that will double as an event space and an intimate performance venue for up to 150 people.

Demolition for the 252-254 Huntington Avenue buildings is projected to commence in early 2020. The Huntington is projected to begin renovations during the 2021-2022 season.

QMG is delighted to provide the city of Boston with new living spaces in the heart of the city and to align with the Huntington Theatre Company, one of Boston’s great cultural assets. We are looking forward to the next steps in this project and would also like to thank Mayor Walsh and his staff for their guidance through this process.” — John Matteson of QMG Huntington LLC



Project Press

Featured Stories

Press Releases

© 2021 Huntington Theatre Company. All rights reserved | Trouble viewing this site? Please download Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.