Amanda Horton has been named by the University of Central Arkansas as the Executive Director of Public Appearances, where she will oversee the soon-to-open Windgate Center for Fine and Performing Arts, in addition to Reynolds Performance Hall.
“It’s been an honor to serve the UCA campus and central Arkansas community by presenting world-renowned performing arts events at Reynolds Performance Hall,” Horton said. “I’m thrilled with the opportunity to build upon this work with the addition of the Windgate Fine and Performing Arts Center that will showcase a variety of arts disciplines with its multiple event spaces.”
The Windgate Fine and Performing Arts Center will merge art, music and theater into one 114,000 square-foot space, building upon two decades of success of Reynolds Performance Hall.
The new performance spaces in Windgate will allow for more opening dates for Broadway tours and cultural performances. Reynolds’ already popular subscription series will continue to grow because of this, and will allow for growth in emerging and niche market artists.
“UCA has repeatedly shown its dedication to arts education and integration with its educational degree programs, Reynolds Performing Arts Season, Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre Festival and more. This new center emphasizes this commitment to our students and community by offering unique cultural opportunities in an extraordinary setting,” Horton said.
Opening for public performances in 2023, The Windgate Center will add to the cultural offerings in central Arkansas. The opening night performance for Windgate will be announced in Jan. 2023.
“UCA is fortunate to have a leader in the arts community like Amanda Horton who has the knowledge and experience to showcase the magnificence of this building and all that it has to offer to patrons here in central Arkansas and the entire state,” Houston Davis, the President of UCA, said.
Horton earned her bachelor’s at UCA and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock with a Master’s of Arts. Horton, in serving as the director of Reynolds Performance Hall since 2013, has impacted the growth of the venue. Under her leadership, average ticket sales growth exceeded 70% before the pandemic and Horton has programmed artists, speakers and shows – such as Buddy Guy, Randy Newman, Blue Man Group, Kinky Boots, Bill Nye, Common and Rita Moreno.
Horton also led in the creation of the Main State Education Series at UCA, where students from local schools are exposed to experiencing the performing arts. Main Stage has welcomed more than 50,000 students to campus since it began, for live, professional performing arts. Horton also has worked to secure annual funding, which provides no-cost tickets for students on free or reduced lunch plans.
For more information about Windgate Center for Fine and Performing Arts, click here.