SETTING THE STAGE FOR PHILLY’S ART COMMUNITY
The Temple Performing Arts Center (TPAC) is not only open to the arts community all around Philadelphia, but also serves as Temple’s overall performing center, encompassing diversity, inclusivity and creativity.
Many prominent people have stood on the stage, including Wolf Blitzer, who delivered a speech of encouragement to Temple Owls this fall semester.
“If you suffer a setback early in your career, don’t give up, keep fighting because it is going to get better if you really pursue it,” Blitzer said.
TPAC has hosted performances and talks by BET executive and Temple alum Paxton Baker, Kelly Clarkson, David Gray, Thirty Seconds to Mars and Meek Mill, among others.
Rebecca Cole, a sophomore majoring in music education with a concentration in voice, said the diverse performances at TPAC attract waves of potential students from the various audiences that come to performances.
“There are so many different types of performances, I think it’s a great way for Temple to be recognized,” Cole said. “We have a great space that people can use for performances, but it’s also really nice because it’s used for a variety of performances.”
As a music major, Cole knows what it’s like to be on that stage. As a Temple owl, Cole has also been part of the audience.
“It’s a beautiful space, so it’s quite an experience to stand on stage and look at such a beautiful surrounding,” Cole said. “It makes the performance that much more special.”
The space has also been used for film screenings and shoots, classical concerts, comedy nights and hypnotist shows.
General Manager Sean Roche is one of the main people in charge of keeping these university and North Philadelphia community events up and running. Roche organizes and coordinates events within the space, which may be booked for private or open events.
“TPAC is part of the Center for the Performing and Cinematic Arts here at Temple,” Roche said. “We are an academic space, serving our arts community and larger Temple family with over 200 events per annum.”
TPAC also marks new beginnings, as the commencement of the 28,000 freshmen took place there this fall semester, as it does every year.
“This building is the oldest on campus,” Roche said. “It’s where Temple began.”
It first opens its doors to potential freshmen for events such as Experience Temple Day, and opens one last time to bid farewell to graduating students on graduation day.
“I’ve seen performances there, and it’s really interesting going to see a percussion performance, a band, an orchestra
play or a choir sing,” Cole said. “But then also you think back and say ‘at orientation we did all those things at TPAC.’ It’s really a cool place for Temple to hold different events.”
Different events are hosted at TPAC throughout the school year, showing diversity and inclusiveness in terms of programming, audience and school pride. Temple demonstrates the pride attached to being a Temple Owl
by honoring and congratulating its students through inaugurations and award ceremonies hosted at this revered building.
“Its new incarnation as a performing arts center came into being more than six years ago, after it was decided the old building needed renovation,” Roche said.
Though the building was renovated at a $30 million cost, Temple conserved hundreds of stained glass windows that were already in the building, adding to its unique style.
“It’s a beautiful space. The architecture either lends itself for
sound or really hinders the sound,” Cole said. “Practicing in our practice room and then going into TPAC is quite the change.”
written by jenna faccenda and maryvic perez
photographed by jademan baker