Antaeus Theatre Co. has a new home in downtown Glendale

As crews work to put on its finishing touches, the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center will open Thursday as the new home for the Antaeus Theatre Co. in downtown Glendale.

The opening will feature a four-day festival, which will run from March 2 to 5 and include open-house tours, workshops and several performances.

Antaeus' first show in Glendale will be a production of Tennessee Williams' "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" from March 16 through May 7. That will be followed by William Shakespeare’s "As You Like It," and later a new adaptation by Nambi E. Kelley of the novel "Native Son."

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FOR THE RECORD

3/21, 11:41 a.m.: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated "As You Like It" won the Pulitzer Prize for drama in 1937. "You Can't Take It With You" won the award.

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The center's opening will continue the more than two-decade history of Antaeus productions in Los Angeles, with its previous home being in North Hollywood. The theater troupe has grown its ensemble company into full-season productions.

The theater also trains actors in an academy and manages an arts-education outreach program for under-served youth.

In what culminates a five-year effort, co-artistic director John Sloan said the theater company first met with Glendale city officials to discuss the burgeoning arts community in the area. A few Antaeus board and company members also happen to make Glendale their home, which made finding the relocation site —110 E. Broadway — that much easier.

"A hallmark lesson from all theater companies is to find a community that wants you," Sloan said.

Performances will be presented in one of two spaces. One space is an intimate 80-seat venue with stadium seating where "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" will be presented. The other space is a multipurpose, reconfigurable room that can fit up to 45 seats in either a three-quarter thrust-stage arrangement or theater-in-the-round.

Sloan said there is no "A" or "B" space, although the 45-seat theater is affectionately referred to as the "blueberry" because of dark blue walls. That room will also double as a classroom space for the academy.

To the left of the lobby entrance, center officials plan to create a library space filled with several thousand plays and books about the performing arts where theater-goers and company members can study from the masters.

Other than its productions, Antaeus will continue its playwright lab — a weekly writing workshop for writers around town to work on developing their plays — and partner with Hoover High School for an arts-education program, among other outreach initiatives.

"The experience at Antaeus is an intimate one," Sloan said "What you are really getting here are the highest quality of actors, deeply committed to doing the best work for the community."

For more information, visit antaeus.org.

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Jeff Landa, jeff.landa@latimes.com

Twitter: @JeffLanda

Copyright © 2017, Glendale News-Press

UPDATE

3/21, 11:41 a.m.: This story has been updated to clarify that Antaeus' production of the "Native Son" a new adaptation by Nambi E. Kelley.

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