Patricia Valian Reser Center for the Creative Arts (PRAx), Oregon State University

Corvallis, OR

The new 53,400 SF Patricia Valian Reser Center for the Creative Arts at Oregon State University combines theater, communications, visual arts and music to create a campus gateway project. JH provided acoustic and audio/video services for this project.

The 500-seat recital hall is challenged by the need to present many different ensembles from classical music from the school of music to touring shows featuring all manner of performance types.To acoustically accommodate the wide range of programming, there is an extensive system of adjustable acoustic banners and curtains throughout the hall that, when deployed, transform the rich sound to an intimate pin-drop theatrical experience. The room is a classic shoe-box shape with a series of undulating wood diffusion panels on the walls. The stage is designed after the bass lush Detroit Orchestra Hall and features thick wood decking over a resonant air chamber instead of the traditional plywood over concrete stage flooring.

Jaffe Holden developed AV systems that comply with existing campus design standards to ensure consistent technical support by end users but are adaptable to the specific performance needs for a diverse range of shows and events. The recital hall has loudspeakers for full coverage of the main and wraparound seating sections, with the ability to selectively turn off seating zones when not in use to minimize acoustic impact in the room. A large projection screen is provided to allow video presentation to match the scale of the room and performance of the audio systems. The Black Box theater has flexible wiring systems and production equipment that can be deployed to suit any number of flexible seating and playing areas. Both venues will support immersive audio systems available now or in the future. The lobby features an informal performance space known as the “Student Heart” and the adjacent Gallery supports traditional visual and multimedia art.

Project Information

53,400 SF
500-Seat Recital Hall
Black Box Theater
Flexible Art Gallery
Back of House Spaces
Outdoor Performance Stage

Design Team

Architect: Holst Architecture
Theater Consultant: Theatre Projects Consultants

Scope of Work

Room Acoustics
Sound Isolation
Sound and Vibration Control
Audio/Video Systems Design


Oregon State University

Completion Date


LEED Rating