New Hancher auditorium

Keaton Maier

Eight years ago, Hancher Auditorium in Iowa City was forced to close its doors due to the flooding of 2008. On September 9, 2016 the doors reopened to a new, 175 million dollar facility. The auditorium began construction in May of 2013 and has a main theater with 1,800 seats. Nearly 50 events will be hosted each year at the Hancher Auditorium.

“I’m super excited,” University of Iowa student and Xavier graduate Jacob Hansen said. “Hancher’s opening season is going to be great.” Hansen lives nearby the new auditorium and plans on attending a few events in the future.

Hancher will feature numerous Broadway musicals including multiple showings of The Book of Mormon October 11-16. The Broadway musicals are just the tip of the iceberg. There will be many more events of varying styles.

Xavier English teacher and Fine Arts Director Ms. Sarah Hayes is excited about the new auditorium and the many opportunities it brings.

“It was a devastating loss to fine arts in the area when Hancher flooded in 2008,” Hayes said. “I believe the investment in a new theatre will pay off, especially since the updated facility allows larger productions. I have tickets to The Book of Mormon in October, Yo-Yo Ma in March, and I will most likely take my mom to see the farewell tour of Mamma Mia! in February, since it is her favorite musical.”

The auditorium was designed by the architect César Pelli. In 1991, Pelli was listed as one of the top ten most influential living American architects by the American Institute of Architects. Some of Pelli’s most notable works include the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia and the World Financial Center in New York City, New York.

The Hancher Auditorium will continue to bring the fine arts to Eastern Iowa for years to come.

Hancher Auditorium Website


24 – Steve Martin and Martin Short

28 – UI Symphony Orchestra and Choirs

29 – David Sanborn Electric Band


2, 5, 6 – Puppet State Theater Company of Scotland

8 – Renée Fleming

11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 – The Book of Mormon

20 – Step Afrika!

26 – Hancher’s Culinary Arts: Pullman Bar & Diner

27 – Maya Beiser

28 – Laurie Lewis and the Right Hands


5 – Pomp, Brass, and Lunacy

11 – Chucho Valdés Joe Lovano Quintent

16 – Hancher’s Culinary Atlas & Basta


1, 2, 3 – The Joffrey Ballet

6 – Emanuel Ax

9 – Asleep at the Wheel


20 – The Cleveland Orchestra

27 – Kyle Abraham / Abraham.In.Motion

31 – The Sound of Music


1, 2, 3, 4, 5 – The Sound of Music

8, 9 – Soil

11 – The Ying Quartet with BIlly Childs

16 – Tanya Tagaq

22 – UI Symphony Orchestra

25, 26 – MAMMA MIA!


3, 4 – Circus Oz

5 – Yo-Yo Ma

8 – Hancher’s Culinary Arts: Oasis

9 – Las Cafeteras

23 – Jessica Lang Dance

25 – The Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra

29 – UI Symphony Orchestra

30 – David J. Skorton


4 – Mission Creek Festival Collaboration

14, 15, – Fred Hersch Trio

19 – Hancher’s Culinary Arts: Share

21, 23 – The Pirates of Penzance


4 – /peh-LO-tah/

5 – Alton Brown Live