Oklahoma State University has announced a $25 million gift from alumni Ross and Billie McKnight to establish an endowment for programming at a planned performing arts center on the university's Stillwater campus.
Named in recognition of the gift, the 93,000-square-foot McKnight Center for the Performing Arts will include an eleven-hundred-seat performance hall, a recital hall with two hundred and twenty-two seats, an outdoor amphitheater with a large screen for broadcast performances, and state-of-the-art technology designed to enhance the audience experience. Scheduled to open in 2019, the center also will serve as a new home for the university's Department of Music and master-class curriculum, while the endowment will enable the university to explore opportunities to work with the country's top symphonies, institutions, artists, and traveling musical groups.
"Billie and I made this commitment to fulfill the vision of the performing arts center to expand the number and type of cultural opportunities available at Oklahoma State through vibrant performances and educational experiences," said Ross McKnight. "We see our gift enabling students at Oklahoma State to achieve their fullest potential through interaction with some of the finest artists in the world. We believe these experiences will inspire students to express their own talents through music and performance."