The Black Box Theatre is an experimental theatre studio with flexible playing space and seating. This performance space is used extensively for theatre performance courses during the daytime. In the evenings, it is used both as a rehearsal space for Mainstage productions and as a performance venue for student productions. The New Paltz Players annually produces a schedule of play-readings, experimental works (including 24 Hour Theatre), and full-length works (of both new works and revivals) as a part of an exciting alternative theatre season. The audience capacity is 50.
The Fine Art Building was built in 1997 and houses the Art Department office, Sculpture, Ceramics, Printmaking and Metal programs and a complete woodshop. This 50,000sq. foot space was designed to give students safe and substantial work areas. Each program has dedicated studios for their majors, individual critique rooms, and well-equipped communal space. There is also the Rotunda space which serves as a meeting hall as well as a gallery for student exhibitions and installations.
Formerly the Old Main Auditorium, the building was renovated and renamed the Julien J. Studley Theatre in 1992. The renovation was made possible through the donations of real estate magnate Julien J. Studley. The theatre seats up to 696 and has served as a focal point for major performing arts events, concerts, lectures, and the annual Fall Convocation ceremony.
Studley Theatre is located in the Old Main Building.
McKenna Theatre, a fully-equipped proscenium theatre seating 366, is named in honor of Dr. Rebecca McKenna, professor of English and Drama and founder of the theatre arts program at New Paltz. At the rear of the theatre is a sound booth for digital audio equipment with the capabilities to playback, mix, and amplify audio. Behind the audience (and upstairs) is a lighting booth with a computerized light board (controlling over 200 dimmers) and LCD video projection equipment. Above the stage is a stage house with 32 line sets in the fly space. Behind the stage are the scene shop, scenery storage area, paint shop, and other technical facilities.
The Max and Nadia Shepard Recital Hall, is a 125-seat hall named in honor of benefactors to the performing arts programs at New Paltz. It offers an intimate setting for chamber music performances and student recitals.
Built in 1954 and renovated in 1989, it was the first free-standing library building on campus. Today, the facilities for the Photography and Graphic Design programs are located here and include Mac labs, seminar rooms, equipment rooms, a book bindery, various darkrooms, developing lab, and a printing lab.
Originally built as a dining hall, Parker was converted to a theatre venue, teaching space, and theatre production facility in 1972. Renovated in 1994, it features a modified thrust stage surrounded by an intimate three-quarter audience configuration with seating for up to 200 patrons. Behind the audience are lighting and sound booths with a computerized light board (controlling over 90 dimmers) and digital audio equipment. On either side of that performance venue are performance studio spaces, where classes are offered in acting, voice, movement, and musical theatre. Behind the theatre, there are dressing rooms, a costume studio, costume maintenance and storage facilities, and faculty offices.
The building's two wings, which are joined by a common corridor, comprise more than 9,000 square feet of exhibition and teaching space. The East Wing includes four galleries (Morgan Anderson Gallery, Howard Greenberg Family Gallery, Sara Bedrick Gallery, Corridor Gallery), as well as research and seminar rooms. The West Wing includes two galleries (Alice and Horace Chandler Gallery, North Gallery). The SDMA is one of the largest art museums in the SUNY system. In addition to providing outstanding instruction space for students and Hudson Valley school children, the SDMA allows New Paltz community members to regularly display their artwork. The permanent collection includes more than 5,000 works of art representing diverse world cultures. The museum is named for and honors Samuel Dorsky, a philanthropist and patron of the arts.
Smiley Art Building houses the Art Education program, the Foundation program, and the Drawing and Painting program. Some Graphic Design classes are also offered in this facility. Faculty offices are found on the first and second floors. First floor design studios have access to an outdoor patio for work on large projects. Smiley Art Building is also home to the Student Art Gallery, two computer labs, and the Art History slide library. A slide viewing room and photography studio for general student use are in the basement.
The building was named for prominent members of the Smiley family including Albert K. Smiley, Daniel Smiley Jr., Albert K. Smiley Jr. and Ruth Smiley, many of whom served in prominent roles with the Board of Visitors and Council for the New Paltz Normal School. Many members of the family remain active in their support of the college today.