About the Davis Performing Arts Center

Opened in November 2005 as Georgetown University’s first building designed for the arts, the Davis Performing Arts Center is the research and teaching laboratory for the Theater & Performance Studies Program and houses the administrative office of the Department of Performing Arts. The Center honors Father Royden B. Davis, beloved former Dean of Georgetown College and a patron of the arts. Nationally recognized architect Hugh Hardy transformed the former Ryan Administration Building (expanding on the site of Georgetown’s first gymnasium) for the Davis Center.

Ryan Gym as it looked after opening in 1906.

Since its 2005-06 inaugural season, Season of Transformation, the Davis Center has hosted a thematically linked home season of cutting-edge productions for the Theater and Performance Studies Program, featuring cutting-edge productions committed to diversity and artistic risk-taking. We have presented numerous new works and adaptations, DC premieres, bold re-imaginings of classics, important contemporary plays, and student-devised productions.

Our mainstage productions have engaged deep collaborations with nationally renowned artists (Sojourn Theatre, Heather Raffo, The Neo-Futurists), acclaimed local companies (Synetic Theater, Spooky Action Theater, a 13-year partnership with Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater), local universities (Gallaudet University, University of Maryland), and on-campus programs such as the Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics and frequent co-productions with GU’s student theater companies (including Black Theatre Ensemble, Mask and Bauble, and Nomadic Theatre).

The Davis Center is a hub for interdisciplinary exchange with the wider community, both locally and globally. In addition to mainstage TPST productions in the Gonda and Devine Theatres, the Davis Center hosts special residencies in theater, music, and dance, placing students from the entire Georgetown community in regular contact with leading professionals from the us and beyond, as well as presenting work and hosting residencies with leading artists from around the world. Through our partnerships with local organizations, dc public schools, and numerous community partners, we actively engage Georgetown’s social justice mission through the performing arts.

davis center logo

2015 marked the 10th Anniversary of the Davis Performing Arts Center. View an archive of the celebratory events.