A once-abandoned movie theater complex in Northeast DC reopened in 2006 as the Atlas: a multidisciplinary, community-based venue where artists and audiences connect through dance, theater, music, and more. As the H Street corridor’s cultural anchor, the Atlas brings dozens of thought-provoking and affordable performances to its four stages each year. That’s in addition to the 85 collaborative shows, workshops, and classes that take place at its annual INTERSECTIONS Festival. Throughout the year, resident arts partners utilize the venue at discounted rates, allowing them to channel resources toward outstanding arts programming. The Atlas Stagecraft and Apprenticeship Program (ASTAP) trains adults to become professional stage hands, while the City at Peace program helps youth explore social justice and conflict resolution – and inspires a new generation of performing artists. This arts mecca draws 100,000+ patrons each year. Applause, please.

COVID-19 Update: Until the theater can once again welcome guests, virtual programming keeps the community engaged. A Moving Walls exhibition, intended for live viewing, is now available online; new murals are visible outside the theater, and the Atlas’s City of Peace program is underway. Youth from different schools and neighborhoods explore questions about race, gender, ethnicity, sexuality, and the role these play in their lives. They bring concerns, creativity, and ideas for change that will help to create a city at peace. All of this – until the doors open and the lights go on.

Headquarters: DC-Ward 6

Where They Operate: DC-Ward 6; Near Northeast in Washington, DC; Capitol Hill in Washington, DC

Age Groups Served: All

Population(s) Served: All

Schools They Work In: Maury Elementary School; Miner Elementary School; Ludlow-Taylor Elementary School; Two Rivers Public Charter School; J.O. Wilson Elementary School

Awards & Recognition


Mayor’s Arts Award for Excellence in Service to the Arts - September 2012

Award of Merit from the Mid-Atlantic Construction magazine – 2007

Best rehab/renovation/reuse project award from the Washington Business Journal – 2006

Historic landmark designation by DC HPRB/SHPO – October 24, 2002

Press

Budget (FY2014)

  • $3 million or higher
  • The current budget for Atlas Performing Arts Center is: $1 million to $3 million
  • $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

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