New Horizons in Excellence
Today, Reardon Auditorium is an important point of connection between Anderson University and the city of Anderson. The university uses the building for chapel services, student performances, and ceremonies, but Reardon Auditorium is one of the largest auditoriums spaces in Anderson, making it a valuable space for the whole community.
Reardon Auditorium was built in 1984 and dedicated on April 26th, 1984. The cornerstone laying ceremony took place on December 5th, 1983, while the building was still unfinished. A time capsule was placed behind the cornerstone at that time. Its contents included academic catalogs for the university and seminary, a copy of the Anderson College News, lists of faculty and students, and various books related to Anderson University’s history.
The auditorium was designed with “acoustic architecture” to maximize the listening experience of everything from concerts to chapel services. The stage, which is 53 feet from back to the orchestra pit, is easily visible from every seat in the auditorium. There are 1,700 seats on the main floor and 500 in the balcony, enough for the entire student body of AU and twice the number of Anderson College Music Hall, the former undergraduate chapel location. Reardon Auditorium is also notable for its large chandelier, which is made of 1,225 transparent tubes containing 7,102 miniature lights. The “New Horizons in Excellence” funding campaign provided money for the project with Carl Erskine as chairman of the Anderson-Madison County Campaign Cabinet.
The first public concert at Reardon Auditorium, sponsored by Delco-Remy, was held on February 11th, 1984. The performers were jazz musician Dizzy Gillespie and the Anderson Symphony Orchestra – audience members paid just $8. The first baccalaureate in the auditorium took place four months later, on June 17th.
Reardon Auditorium was named for Robert Reardon, president of Anderson College from 1958-1983.
- "Reardon Auditorium" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archives