Auditorium Capabilities

Dodd Auditorium is a student run facility

  1. The student staff are all trained by the director of Dodd Auditorium on basic theatre operations. If you cannot work with student whose experience range from novice to pre-professional and treat them with dignity and respect, then you do not want to book an event in Dodd Auditorium. There is no “call list” available for professional staff who have any experience in Dodd Auditorium.

Dodd Auditorium is not a road house

  1. Dodd Auditorium is not equipped to handle medium to large road shows. Dodd Auditorium has very limited backstage space and the dressing rooms are not ADA accessible.

UMW Community Value Statement is followed

  1. As a public, liberal arts university, the University of Mary Washington community is dedicated to providing a diverse, accepting, and supportive environment that holds all of its members to the highest standards of conduct, scholarship, integrity, inclusiveness, respect, and engagement. Through a commitment to these values, we strive to transform our academic community into a place where all will learn, thrive, and grow. As faculty, staff, and students of the UMW community, we are committed to upholding these common values
    1. Accountability – we promote practices, behaviors, and attitudes where individuals take responsibility for their actions and decisions.
    2. Scholarship – we promote intellectual inquiry by engaging ideas and one another in order to gain better understanding and contribute to knowledge.
    3. Personal and Institutional Integrity – we are honorable in our academic and work endeavors as well as our interactions with others.
    4. Inclusive Excellence – we strive for all members of the community to have equitable access to opportunities for participation and the resources necessary for success.
    5. Respect and Civility – we foster an environment in which every individual is treated with dignity at all times by valuing the inherent worth of all identities, abilities, and differences.
    6. Engagement – we develop engaged members of our community who actively participate in the community through responsible leadership and service.
  2. All programs in Dodd Auditorium will be held to these values.

Specific limitations of Dodd Auditorium

Power Disconnects

  • One – DSL – 200 amps 3 phase with cam-lock connectors – traditionally this is for external sound hookup
  • One – DSR – 175 amp 3 phase with cam-lock connectors – this disconnect is located behind the dimmer rack and beside the stage manager’s panel – access is limited

Lighting – Use existing plot or hire outside lighting company

  • Dodd Auditorium uses a rep lighting plot to light over 100 events per year. This plot however does not light the UMW Philharmonic stage extension (6′ x 32′) that is added for UMW Philharmonic concerts. This stage extension is too far DS for lights to reach it from the stage electrics and there are not enough circuits in FOH to add a front light wash for the extension.
  • Limited specials available for refocusing – consult light plot
  • FOH has very little power available in the form of circuits/dimmers
    • Cove (opening in ceiling in front of the stage where the front light is located) has a total of 9 circuits – lighting from cove can hit the UMW Philharmonic stage extension, but front light has to be taken from some other place on the stage and refocused
    • Balcony rail and the box booms at the balcony share 6 circuits
  • Box boom position angles are not good for musicians on stage, as the angle is very shallow – almost straight on.
  • The house light plot is available upon request
  • If the house light plot is not acceptable – then an outside lighting company must be hired with trussing as house light plot will not be struck for your event, but will be flown up to 22′ above the deck. Outside light plot must be a self-contained system with their own control board
  • The only DMX ports to access the house lighting system is located in the balcony light/sound booth or backstage at the dimmer rack. There are no DMX ports locate at the back of the house on the orchestra level. Outside lighting companies will need to run DMX to their lighting console.
  • Wireless DMX has been used in Dodd Auditorium with unsatisfactory results
  • The house light board – ETC – ION, will not be dismantled to accommodate external console at the house lighting/sound booth. Placement of lighting console must be approved by the director of Dodd Auditorium prior to load-in. Any blocked seating must be approved by the booking organization and removed from seating chart prior to tickets going on sale.
  • The follow spot booth is located in the back of the auditorium – 100′ from the stage. Due to the placement/angle of the booth, following a performer into the seating area is not possible past row “D”. Any patrons who stand up in the front row of the balcony will/can block the follow spots light from hitting the DS portion of the UMW Philharmonic Stage Extension
  • Dodd Auditorium has 2 Robert Juliet “Alex” followspots


  • Dodd Auditorium is equipped to handle basic audio reproduction. Our mic inventory is limited to SM57 & SM58.
  • Dodd sound console is a 32 channel console – Behringer X32
  • If house audio is not acceptable – then an outside audio company must be hired
  • Outside audio companies will not be allowed to tie into the existing house audio system.
  • Outside audio companies must supply all components for sound system (speakers, stands, microphones, mixer, amps, cables, etc.)


  • Dodd Auditorium does NOT have a load rail to load weights – all balancing of linesets must be accomplished by adding weight incrementally to the system from the flyrail – out of weight lineset will not be permitted for the run of show.
  • Items that weigh more than 200 lbs will not be allowed to be hung from the Dodd Auditorium fly system
    • There are NO pick lines in the auditorium to fly any rigs – all lighting or sound equipment in FOH must be on lifts from the floor or stage level

Stage/Backstage/storage Area

  • Stage is basically 35’w x 20′
  • Access to basement is located in the US corners – SL/SR from backstage
  • Very limited storage space available backstage – house items must remain on stage and cannot move out of building (some items can be moved to touring truck for temporary storage for duration of event)
    • SR stores/houses
      • Dimmer rack
      • Stage manager’s rack
      • Concert grand piano
      • Choral risers
      • Stacks of chairs
    • SL stores/houses
      • Orchestra shell
      • Band risers
      • Storage hamper
      • Storage of lighting booms and large podium
      • There is no storage facility attached to Dodd Auditorium
      • There is not an elevator available from stage to house level. If touring company does not travel with functional lift gate on the end of the truck to lower FOH equipment to street level, then touring company MUST provide ramp to go from stage level to house level.
      • Handicap lift from stage to house level is available for disabled person use ONLY.

Dressing Rooms/Restrooms

  • Dressing rooms and restrooms for men and women are located in the basement under the stage. This area is not ADA accessible.
  • Dodd Auditorium has five rooms available to be used as dressing rooms
    • #1 – 9′ x 9′ room – often used as production office
    • #2 – 9′ x 18′ room – star dressing room – divided into two rooms
    • #3 & #4 – 9′ x 18′ rooms – chorus dressing rooms
    • #5 – 9′ x 9′ space plus 8′ x 8′ sound proof practice room – often used for hospitality
  • Restrooms – one women’s and one men’s

The director of Dodd Auditorium is not a representative of the agency who booked the venue. The director of Dodd Auditorium serves the interest of the university. They do not handle hospitality of any kind – any issues with hospitality or catering needs to be addressed directly with a representative of the booking agency.

All seating/tickets are handled through/with the booking agency. The director of Dodd Auditorium does not handle issues that arise between patrons and the booking agency.