The S.E. Belcher Jr. Chapel and Performance Center
The S.E. Belcher Jr. Chapel and Performance Center is the premier performance center for the city of Longview, Texas, and surrounding communities. With world-class acoustics and staging, the center attracts shows that Longview residents would not be able to see without traveling many miles. The center also functions as LeTourneau University's chapel, providing LETU students with a place to gather together three times per week for incredible Christian speakers and music groups. The chapels are open to the public and a schedule can be found on the LeTourneau University Web site.
The S.E. Belcher Jr. Chapel and Performance Center opened in Fall 2007. Designed by professionals in architecture and theater design, the center features 1,400 seats on the ground level and another 600 seats in two, opera-style balconies.
The building features a full working stage and orchestra lift, as well as prop and staging areas, dressing rooms, soundproofed rehearsal rooms, classrooms and offices. It is the largest single-building capital campaign in LeTourneau University's 63-year history.
The building was designed by Lewis, Elliott & Studer, Inc. architects of Arkansas, with assistance from the acoustical firm of BAI - Boner Associates Inc. of Austin, Texas, with theater design consultation by Jones & Phillips Associates of Lafayette, Ind. Construction management was by Transet Company General Contractors of Longview.
The building is named for the late board trustee emeritus Shelby Elliot Belcher, Jr. who gave the $5 million lead gift. During the dedication service, his grandson, David Belcher, stated, "My grandfather deeply believed in the value of a Christian education, and the seeds he planted are now coming to fruition."