The Robert and Judi Newman Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Denver opened its doors in 2002 and has been acclaimed as one of the nation's finest university performing arts centers. Unique in the region for its size, acoustic quality, and programming, the Newman Center is dedicated to showcasing cultural diversity, stretching the imagination, and stimulating dialogue through the performing arts.
At the core of the Newman Center's programming is Newman Center Presents, a multidisciplinary professional arts series, showcasing renowned artists and new voices from around the world. The Newman Center is home to DU's Lamont School of Music and Department of Theatre, who present hundreds of performances each year. The Newman Center is also home to many of our community's premier arts organizations.
The Newman Center uplifts Denver audiences and artists by creating regional and global connections.
To be a cultural anchor for a thriving, dynamic, and diverse 21st century Denver.
Our group of volunteer advisory board members works with the Administrative Team to support the organization's mission and vision.Learn More
Newman Center History
20 Years of Performing Arts
The $70 million Newman Center made its official debut on Friday, April 18, 2003 with a sold-out gala featuring mezzo-soprano Marilyn Horn and bass Hao Jiang Tian. Distinguished guests included former DU Chancellor Dan Ritchie, Judi and Bob Newman, Sharon Magness, Cleo Parker Robinson and Joy Burns. The Villager newspaper called the gala opening “the most spectacular nonprofit event in metro Denver’s recent history” while the Rocky Mountain News commented on the “fine acoustics, along with a quality virtually unknown in Denver concert halls – intimacy.” The Denver Post described the Newman Center “as a gem,” helping the “city attract talent that simply never came here before.”
Twenty years following the debut of the Newman Center, the accolades keep coming. Upon sharing the most promising fall shows of 2022, Ray Mark Rinaldi of the Denver Post had the following to say: “Hard to believe the Newman Center for the Performing Arts has been around for 20 years now. It’s remarkable considering how crucial it has become to the city’s fine arts scene. No local venue has shown half the commitment to bringing local crowds such a high level of international names in the fields of dance and classical music.”
Over the years, the Newman Center has hosted a dizzying array of talent, often through the curated Newman Center Presents series which has been lauded for its adventurous and discerning programming. In 2010, Westword gave the Newman Center a “Best Unsung Arts Series” award, while the venue has received national attention for its dance programming. A small sampling of artists who have performed at the Newman Center includes Lindsey Buckingham (2011-2012), John Legend (2008-2009), Chick Corea with Bela Fleck (2013-2014), and Idina Menzel (2008-2009). Over the past two seasons alone, sold-out performances by Paul Taylor Dance Company, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis and Sam Bush have brightened the June Swarner Gates Concert Hall. The Newman Center welcomes over 130,000 people annually for nearly 500 presentations.