At Webster University, we believe the arts serve as an expression of our culture's deeper values in a diverse and technologically advancing world. Through expression in art, dance, music, and theater, we connect with our communities in ways that evoke emotion and create a greater understanding about the timeless challenges of the human condition.
Our long-standing tradition of meaningful creative expression, combined with our commitment as a home for significant professional arts organizations, actualizes the artistic, academic, and cultural atmosphere necessary to the success of our students in reaching their goals.
Our Community Music School
The Community Music School of Webster University (CMS) offers outstanding music education and performance opportunities to students of all ages and abilities in the St. Louis area and beyond.
A sampling of opportunities at the CMS include individual lessons, Kindermusik, ensembles, the Suzuki program, and adult programs.
Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts Facilities
The Browning Theatre at Webster University seats nearly 1,000 people. The stage is a thrust configuration, allowing actors to enter and exit from the front, which is a design element inspired by the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis.
Every fall and spring, the Sargent Conservatory of Theatre Arts stages one show in the Browning Theatre. They also share the space with The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, which produces six shows in the Browning each season.
Some past productions include As You Like It, The Drowsy Chaperone, and Fahrenheit 451.
The Emerson Studio is Webster's unique black box theatre. Situated below the Browning Theatre, the studio seats a flexible number of audience members from 80-150. Sargent Conservatory of Theatre Arts shows maintain a constant 125 seats per show.
Each fall and spring, one show is mounted in the studio. The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis produces three shows in the Emerson Studio each season.
Some past productions include The Philadelphia Story and Alice in Wonderland.
Stage Three is the Conservatory's small proscenium theater located in Webster Hall. The theater seats 125 people and is used exclusively for Sargent Conservatory of Theatre Arts shows. Stage Three also serves as a classroom during the day. Directing, acting, and voice and speech classes are held in the theater.
Some past Conservatory productions include Hot'l Baltimore, The Glorious Ones, and Lysistrata.
Winifred Moore Auditorium used to be called the Chapel of All Saints and was the location of daily Mass and various ceremonies.
In 1973, the space was renovated and the religious accoutrements relocated around campus, sold, or given away. Many of the pews were sold to alumni for $50 each. The chapel was renamed Winifred Moore Auditorium after it was renovated with gifts from Winifred W. Rogers and Elizabeth D. Hyatt in memory of their mother and grandmother, Winifred Moore.
Winifred Moore is now used as one of the main locations on the Webster Groves Campus for concerts, film screenings, lectures and other large events
Thompson House was completed in 1910, and is the oldest building on campus, pre-dating the founding of Webster University by five years.
The University Archives provides detail about the house, its first owner, and its builder. Webster University acquired the building in the 1950s and re-purposed the building for music. At one point, though, two nuns lived on the top floor, where we now have a classroom and four faculty studios.
Thompson House is full of character, with beautiful quartersawn oak paneling in the Recital Hall (a combination of the original parlor and dining room), a few fireplaces, and even a walk-in safe in the corner of one piano studio. The building now houses twelve full-time faculty, the department office, the office of the Dean of the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts, practice rooms, classrooms, a computer lab, a student lounge, and the Recital Hall.
The former dining room is now part of the Recital Hall. Eleanor Roosevelt once dined in this room! Recitalists now perform in front of the fireplace (now sealed) on purpose-built stage that holds a Steinway B piano. The wall sconces are gone, but the oak paneling remains.
The Hunt Gallery is an integral part of the educational mission of the Department of Art, Design, and Art History, as well as an important and highly visible aspect of its community outreach. The Hunt Gallery is a non-commercial, alternative venue for providing professionally curated exhibitions of contemporary art for the academic community and broader St. Louis area public.
As a significant factor in St. Louis region's cultural environment, Hunt Gallery presents exhibitions of individual artists and/or groups of artists of regional, national and international renown whose works demonstrate significant aesthetic achievement and art historical importance.
8342 Big Bend Blvd.
Webster Groves, MO 63119
On Sept. 25, 2020 Hunt Gallery is opening a virtual exhibition of works by Tom Lang, titled Scratching. While Lang has had numerous solo shows in the U.S. and abroad, Scratching would have been his first exhibition at Webster University. Tom Lang served as Chair of the Department of Art, Design, and Art History, and has taught art at Webster for 49 years.
The exhibition was originally intended to appear in the Cecille R. Hunt Gallery and now will be Hunt Gallery's first virtual exhibition. Although this exhibition will not be a retrospective, in his own word's "at a certain point everything is a kind of retrospective." The virtual exhibition of Scratching will show a selection of works created in the past year and a half which are assembled with important nods to the many years of his art making.
The Jean and Wells Hobler Center for Dance is a fabulous, inspirational space for the Department of Dance to make its home. Two gorgeous, spacious studios are complemented by a comfortable lounge area and locker room facilities. These spaces are ideal for promoting both creativity and a strong work ethic while spending long hours rehearsing and in class.
The Gary Hubler Student Dance Lounge, named for Professor Emeritus Gary Hubler, offers a pleasant area to relax between classes and rehearsals. The lounge contains a microwave, refrigerator, couches, dance magazine resource center, three computers, and a multimedia resource center. The lounge is close to studios, faculty offices, and men's and women's locker rooms, showers, and full restroom facilities.
Visiting professional companies regularly give master classes in our spacious studios, giving Webster dancers opportunities to work alongside national and international professionals. Past master teachers include Wewolf, Cleo Parker Robinson, 10 Hairy Legs, Smashworks: Ashley McQueen, MUNY: Megan Larche, Velocity Dance Convention: Eve Mason, Alicia Graf Mack (Alvin Ailey), Niharika Murthyraju, MADCO—Nicole Whitesell, Grand Rapids Ballet, Nicole Thomas (Pinky), Kirven Douthit-Boyd (Alvin Ailey), Amy Seiwert, and Ashley Tate.
“The unique relationship I formed with my professors is something I’ll never forget. They pushed me, encouraged me and helped me become the artist I am today.”
BM in Jazz Performance and Composition, ’13
Founded in 1915, Webster University is committed to ensuring high-quality learning experiences that transform students for global citizenship and individual excellence. Prepare for your next step and explore our community resources.
Highlights from the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts
News Around Webster: Carter, Curtis, Erb, Goedereis, Kwon, Stiles
May 4, 2022
Webster University Dance Ensemble Spring Concert April 29-May 1
April 22, 2022
Concerto/Aria Competition Winners Announced
April 19, 2022