Cornish College of the Arts has a number of public programs that serve our mission to provide a focal point in the community for public presentation, artistic criticism, participation and discussion of the arts. For the current semester's events, please see our Calendar.
We also work with local nonprofits to provide performance and meeting space. To learn more about facilities rentals, please see our venue page.
The Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center is a vibrant theatrical and educational facility and a landmark of modern architecture comprising a 470-seat main auditorium, a flexible black-box theater, and a generous forecourt and lobby. Built for the World’s Fair of 1962 and now operated by Cornish College of the Arts as its highest-profile venue, the Cornish Playhouse presents a full range performing arts events open to the public. Between the work created by Cornish students and professional productions from a wide range of community partners, the Cornish Playhouse offers rich experiences not only in theater but also in dance, music and the visual arts. A public presentation, artistic criticism, participation and discussion of the arts. As part of its public benefits, the Cornish Playhouse's Artist Incubator Residencies offer free space for artists to create and test new work.
The Neddy at Cornish is an annual artist award program supported by the Behnke Foundation and housed at Cornish College of the Arts in memory of Robert E. (“Ned”) Behnke and in celebration of his life as an artist. Each year, eight artists living and working in the greater Puget Sound region are chosen as finalists. From these eight artists, two $25,000 unrestricted awards are given — one in painting and one in any medium or combination of media grounded in the visual arts. The remaining six finalists each receive $1,500 and are included in a group exhibition in September. In addition, this program supports the public lectures and forums focused on contemporary art.
Cornish College of the Arts operates performance, exhibition, and event space at the Seattle Center, on Capitol Hill, and in the South Lake Union neighborhood. These spaces have been used by a wide variety of community partners for free or reduced rents including Earshot Jazz Festival, Seattle International Dance Festival, Black Box Festival, NUMUS, and many more.