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Musco Center for the Arts to be built on Chapman

Placido Domingo helped break ground on the university’s $64 million facility.

By Scott McCourtneyPublished: October 01, 2012

Left to right: Jim Doti, Marybelle Musco,
Placido Domingo, S. Paul Musco
Last August, Chapman University broke ground on its Musco Center for the Arts, a $64 million performance center. Placido Domingo, artistic director for the Los Angeles Opera, and S. Paul and Marybelle Musco, co-chairs of the fundraising effort, were on hand to dedicate the site. Also in attendance were William Hall, dean of Chapman University’s College of Performing Arts, and Jim Doti, Chapman president.
The 1,050-seat center will be equipped with state-of-the-art facilities for orchestra and theater productions, as well as amenities for other events, including those produced by the city of Orange. Once completed, it will rank among Southern California’s premier concert and performance halls. The center will benefit both the campus and the surrounding community as a venue for live shows and performing-arts education.
Principal contributors, S. Paul and Marybelle Musco, lent their name to the structure. Other key players are: Bill Murray of Pfeiffer Partners Architects, which designed the center; and Yasuhisa (Yasu) Toyota, who will design the center’s acoustics. Among Toyota’s esteemed projects are L.A.’s Disney Concert Hall and Australia’s Sydney Opera House.
Doti thanked those integral to the project and reflected on what the center will bring to the region: “Not only will the Musco bring great music [to Chapman and O.C.], it will be training the future generations that will continue to bring music to the lives, hearts and minds here in Orange County,” he said.
Before the groundbreaking was complete, Domingo conveyed his reverence about the importance of the arts and maintaining a place for it in society. 
“I have spent my entire life in the performing arts, and it is the single most important thing in the world,” he said. “There is never enough you can do for your community. California is one of the greatest states with a great future in the arts; people gather for the arts to live in a magical world and to be one – no religion, no race, just the arts of music and acting.”

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