Wear your heart on your seat in Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts’ new Studio Theater

By Breeanya Hinkel

Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts (SPCA) is both a historical landmark and an all-encompassing center for the arts in downtown Prescott. The 126-year-old former Sacred Heart Catholic Church, which was gifted to the Center in 1969, houses SPCA, and the facilities have served the communities for 51 years.

The center has embarked on a new era of artistic adventures with the building of a new studio theater. Since SPCA is a community theater, the organization is relying on the support of donors and community members to help keep the arts thriving locally.


At the height of the pandemic when the SPCA’s 50th season was dark, the organization gratefully received an anonymous $3M cornerstone gift, which funded an upgrade of the Main Stage to a flexible cabaret design so it could reopen for its 51st season, finish the design for its new 10,000+ square-foot, multi-use Studio Theatre building, and plan for construction.

Despite a funding gap, SPCA broke ground in July 2021 to control rapidly rising costs due to the pandemic and began to see its vision come alive. Community support for the capital campaign will help keep the project on track to open in late fall 2022.

The Cabaret

Previously known as the Main Stage, the SPCA Cabaret was transformed during the pandemic.  It includes cabaret-style seating, drinks for purchase, and high-quality entertainment.

The Studio Theater

The in-progress Studio Theater was designed by local architect Bill Otwell and is being constructed by Haley Construction. This 99-seat theater in the round will include modern storytelling pieces to add an additional repertoire to The Cabaret.

This theater will include:

  • Flexible, convertible, and accessible black box multi-use space with LED lighting, digital sound, and video walls.
  • Indoor/outdoor multiuse classroom space.
  • An art gallery.
  • Rehearsal space.
  • A box office and concessions.
  • Costume and prop storage.
  • An outdoor amphitheater/event space.
  • Office space.
  • An elevator.
  • State-of-the-art air circulation, heating, cooling, and cleaning systems.
  • The digital sound throughout the campus.
  • Repairs and/or refurbishes the existing campus to address a variety of critical safety, health, comfort, and maintenance issues.

How Can You Help? 

Some people assume that the cornerstone gift SPCA received in 2020 was sufficient to fund this project, but the pandemic and rising construction costs dramatically increased the project budget and impacted the bottom line.

You can show your support to Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts by sponsoring a seat in the new Studio Theater. For only $2,500, this legacy gift will allow you to include your name, a loved one’s name, or the name of a business or organization on the back of a high-quality chair for the lifetime of the theater.

SPCA also gladly accepts general campaign donations, sponsorships, and other naming opportunities.

Visit www.pca-az.net for more information!