Friday, July 09, 2010

New shell installed at Saint Mary’s University

The shell in the process of being assembled.

WINONA, Minn. — Because of the generosity of the late Joseph C. Page, Saint Mary’s University was able to purchase and install a new acoustic shell system for the Page Theatre this summer.

The steel shell, specifically designed and engineered for the SMU theatre, blends in with the architecture, and is surrounded by a high-pressure oak laminate. It stands 25 feet high by 44 feet wide and features two flying clouds with build-in lighting.

“This new shell will improve the quality of sound in our 455-seat Page Theatre,” said Michael Charron, dean of the School of the Arts and chair of the Minnesota Arts Board. “This benefits our own performers, but also allows the university to host a larger variety of musical venues. Winona has become a destination for quality arts programming, and we’re excited to be able to offer another location for performers to consider, thereby increasing arts opportunities in our community.”

An acoustic shell, funded by an estate gift in excess of $50,000 was part of the Joseph C. Page Revocable Trust Agreement. Page, a lifelong Winona resident and long-time Winona district court clerk, passed away in 1985, leaving an estate valued at $1.5 million and an estate plan that included a bequest to Saint Mary’s. In addition to his many philanthropic gifts at the time of his death, Page established a trust that paid all net income to his long-time deputy clerk during her lifetime. Upon her death in late 2009, the remainder was distributed to Saint Mary’s.