Anyone who has ever had the pleasure of attending an event at the Kravis Center for Performing Arts in Downtown West Palm Beach understands the level of class and brilliance this venue provides. I was lucky enough to walk across the Kravis Center stage as part of a graduating class of Alexander W. Dreyfoos High School of the Arts, and have experienced the wonderment of their regal ballet performance, The Nutcracker, as one of our family holiday traditions. While the Kravis Center is most notable for the performances it produces, this year outstanding remarks will be made about The Center itself after $50 million worth of upgrades are polished off.
Aside from an expanded lobby, additional restrooms, behind-the-scenes technology improvements, a valet parking garage, and a pedestrian-friendly plaza, the corner of Sapodilla Avenue and Okeechobee Blvd will feature a new sparkling fountain and landscaping rising to Dreyfoos Hall’s glass-walled façade.
Behind the expansion is a $1 million donor himself and new board chairman, Jeffrey Stoops, a Delray Beach businessman who has served as president and CEO of SBA Communications Corp. since 2002. Stoops also happens to be a proud father of one of the talented dancers who used to perform in the Nutcracker with Ballet Florida, and understands how much this venue has done for the youth of Palm Beach County.
The Kravis Center for Performing Arts is more than just a gorgeous performing arts venue- this Palm Beach County crown jewel is a non-profit committed to enriching the lives of students and educators in South Florida by providing engaging and enlightening arts education programs. In fact, since opening in 1992, the Kravis Center has provided access to the performing arts for about 2.3 million schoolchildren.
Each year, the Kravis Center, which has a $30 million annual operating budget, brings more than 70,000 children to experience the theatre. The Kravis pays for busing and tickets, with no expense to the school system.