MN Orchestra to Play at Convention Ctr. in ’12-’13

President and CEO Michael Henson said that the move makes sense because the Minneapolis Convention Center auditorium is similar in size to Orchestra Hall and offers "beautiful amenities."

The Minnesota Orchestra will perform its 2012-2013 season at the Minneapolis Convention Center's auditorium while its longtime home is being renovated.

The $45 million renovation and expansion of Orchestra Hall will begin in June 2012, and the building's grand reopening will be in June 2013.

“We felt fortunate to discover the auditorium at the Minneapolis Convention Center in our search for a 'home away from home' that would meet the needs of our audiences and performers,” Minnesota Orchestra President and CEO Michael Henson said in a statement.

“We investigated many options and were thrilled to identify a venue that was of a size comparable to Orchestra Hall, boasts beautiful amenities, and would rework its schedule to make room for our busy season so that the vast majority of our concerts can be performed under one roof,” Henson continued.

Toronto-based architecture firm Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg was hired to handle the design of the renovation-which was unveiled in April. It will double the building's available lobby space, add two exterior terraces, create a new multi-purpose “city room,” and connect to an open-air terrace that will be used during the warmer months.

The orchestra's 2011-2012 season will still be in Orchestra Hall, located at Nicollet Mall and 11th Street. The Minneapolis Convention Center is just a few blocks away.