With an annual visitation reaching over 55,000, Centre College’s Norton Center for the Arts is home to a world-class performing arts series of professional touring artists. The Center serves as a college and community showplace for such top national—and international—acts like Dolly Parton, Yo-Yo Ma, ZZ Top, and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra; along with Broadway musicals, international dance and theatre companies, and a lineup of award-winning culturally and ethnically diverse global artists. Since its opening in 1973, the internationally recognized performing arts center has helped make Danville, Kentucky, a “powerhouse palace of culture” (Louisville Courier-Journal).

Great performances are just the beginning of the Norton Center experience. The Center provides opportunities for Centre students—and the entire community—to creatively explore the complexities and connectedness of the human story while engaging directly with touring and local artists through jam sessions, panel discussions, workshops, masterclasses, school matinees, and social events every season. In addition to the performing arts, the Norton Center boasts an expansive display of visual art and sculpture year-round, along with a rotating schedule of special exhibitions.

In addition to housing classroom, performance, and workshop spaces for Centre College’s impressive academic programs in the arts, the Center also serves as the premier gathering place on campus, hosting more than 200 College events each year. Many of the most memorable on-campus student experiences—Freshman orientation, convocations, athletic awards ceremonies, and graduation—are hosted at the Norton Center.

The Norton Center is a culturally and architecturally distinct Kentucky icon. Designed by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation’s William Wesley Peters, the building is a model of organic architecture, tracing its origins to the Guggenheim Museum. Peters, Frank Lloyd Wright’s first apprentice, collaborated with Wright for more than a quarter-century on his most famous projects, including Fallingwater and the Guggenheim. As a result, Wright-inspired architectural elements are evident throughout the complex, from the repeated hexagonal shapes, playful use of natural light, and bold colors to the intimate performance spaces and amazing acoustics.

Within the 85,000 square foot complex are stunning performance and exhibition spaces and exceptional facilities for the College’s academic programs in dramatic arts, music, and dance. The Center’s two theatres, the 1,476-seat Newlin Hall and the intimate 367-seat Weisiger Theatre draw consistent praise from performers and audiences alike.

With an annual operating budget of nearly $1,700,000, the Norton Center employs ten full-time staff from various professional disciplines, including technical production, patron services, engagement, marketing, and administration. In addition, the Center is the largest employer of Centre College students on campus, with over 150 students serving as part-time box office associates, event managers, ushers, valet drivers, concessions sales, and arts administration staff.

Learn More About The Norton Center

Steve Hoffman

Executive Director
Norton Center for the Arts


Steve Hoffman has curated, produced and presented cross-genre multi-disciplinary programs, events and seasons for nearly 30 years. Since 2010, he has served as Executive Director of Centre College’s Norton Center for the Arts, in Danville, Kentucky, where he is responsible for its oversight, management and programming. Highlights include producing the Japanese Winter Plum Festival and Kentucky Bluegrass Week (in Yamaguchi, Japan), curating The Wright Angle: William Wesley Peters, Frank Lloyd Wright and the Norton Center, producing and commissioning EAT: A Literary and Photography Installation, scores of campus and community engagement activities with professional artists including Yo-Yo Ma, Bobby McFerrin, Ben Vereen, Chris Thile + Edgar Meyer and Sphinx Virtuosi, and his involvement with the 2012 Vice Presidential Debate and Debate Festival. In 2017, Steve was proud to accept, on behalf of the Norton Center, the Governor’s Award for the Arts for Community Arts. Previously, Steve served as President and CEO of the National Steinbeck Center, in Monterey County, California – an international cultural institution and museum with a mission focused on the life, works and philosophies of John Steinbeck. Before that, he spent eleven years as the founding CEO of the Washington Pavilion of Arts and Science, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where he led the multi-disciplinary cultural institution’s Kirby Science Discovery Center and Omnimax-type theater, seven-gallery Visual Arts Center, and Husby Performing Arts Center with its 1,900- and 300-seat theaters. He also previously served as Program Director of the Huntington Arts Council in New York where he produced an annual 50+ day, eight-week outdoor summer festival. Steve’s professional accomplishments include co-chairing the 2009 and 2010 Association of Performing Arts Professionals’ annual national conferences, serving on the California Association of Museums’ board of directors and speaking at regional and national conferences. He has served on federal, national, state and local grant review panels. Steve is also currently on the faculty of the University of Kentucky Department of Arts Administration graduate program and has also taught courses at the University of Michigan and Centre College. He has mentored international, professional, classical musicians since 2013 through the national Young Professionals Career Advancement program. Since living in Kentucky, Steve has served on boards and committees for The Gladys Project, the Heart of Danville, Leadership Boyle County, The Danville Community Arts Center, Heart of Kentucky United Way, Clayton Center for the Arts at Maryville College (Maryville, TN), and the Association of Performing Arts Professionals. His photography, poetry and prose has been published in numerous anthologies and publications.

Molly Baker

Engagement Services Manager


Molly joined the Norton Center as the Engagement Services Manager in the Fall of 2019. Before coming to the Norton Center, Molly held the position of Gallery Manager at TAMARACK: The Best of West Virginia. Later, she served as Assistant Curator/Gallery Manager at the Doris Ulmann Galleries (Berea College) as a sabbatical replacement. Molly is a graduate of Berea College, where she earned a B.A. in Art History and Asian Studies. She went on to earn an M.A. in Art History from the University of Kentucky. Molly is especially dedicated to the study and promotion of the arts and arts-based experiences using creative methods. Specifically, her goal is to bridge arts presentations with inclusive opportunities to learn about context, creators, and cultural significance, pointing to our combined human experiences in order to encourage critical thinking and understanding.

Jennifer Broadwater

Director of Marketing 
and Development


In January of 2019, Jennifer joined the Norton Center for the Arts team as the Director of Marketing & Development. Jennifer previously worked in the Boyle County school system as the Communications Director and was a member of the Shaker Village non-profit team before her time at Boyle County.

Jennifer and her husband have two children and reside in Danville.

Megan deAraujo

Assistant Technical Director
Norton Center for the Arts


Megan de Araujo joined the full time staff of the Norton Center as Assistant Technical Director in 2017. She currently works to assist the Technical Director with all technical aspects of the Norton Center productions, including lighting, sets, sound, and props. Megan is primarily interested in lighting and moving light programming, doing the design and programming of all shows without a dedicated Lighting Designer. Before coming to the Norton Center full time, Megan worked as the in-house lighting technician on a freelance basis for both the Norton Center and the Eastern Kentucky University Center for the Arts. Some of her other freelance credits include lighting programmer for various UK Opera Theater productions (Sweeney Todd, Les Misérables, Phantom of the Opera, and South Pacific), stagehand and technician for the Boy Scouts of America Jamboree in West Virginia, and lighting technician and stagehand for the Frazier Museum’s installation of the Hunger Games Exhibit. Before her career freelancing, Megan sailed around the Hawaiian Islands as the lighting technician for the Norwegian Cruise Lines ship The Pride of America. Megan graduated with a B.A. in Theater from Grinnell College in 2009. She currently lives in Lexington with her husband, Henry.

Jessica Durham

Engagement Coordinator
Norton Center for the Arts


In March of 2014, Jessica Durham began her role as Engagement Coordinator for the Norton Center after working almost two years in the Academic Dean’s office. Her educational background includes a B.A. in Business Administration from Bellarmine University and an M.S. in Human Environmental Sciences, emphasis in Event Planning, from The University of Alabama. She has planned events with organizations such as the Kentucky Derby Festival, Bellarmine University, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, The University of Alabama, and of course Centre College.

Matt Overing

Marketing Coordinator 


Matt Overing joined the Norton Center for the Arts in May of 2019 from the Advocate-Messenger, a daily newspaper in Danville, Kentucky. Matt was the sports editor and covered all athletics across six counties, winning awards for photography, design and storytelling from the Kentucky Press Association. He graduated from the University of Kentucky in 2014, majoring in Journalism with a minor in Political Science. As Marketing Coordinator, Matt works with all things digital at the Norton Center, from the website to social media to subscriber emails. Matt and his wife have two kids and live in Danville.

Michael Lavin

Technical Director


Michael became the Technical Director for the Norton Center in July 2018.  He earned a BFA in Technical Theater from the University of Kentucky. After graduating, he became the Assistant Technical Director and two years later the Technical Director of CAM-PLEX, a multi-events facility, in Gillette, WY.  Michael moved back to Kentucky when he became a Technical Coordinator for the Lexington Opera House and Rupp Arena, where he worked for 15 years. In addition, Michael has worked as an IATSE stagehand and has stage managed events such as Red, White, and Boom and the Acoustic Jam Series. Michael and his wife reside in Versailles with their two children.

Raven Shelton

Creative Marketing Manager


In May 2022, Raven joined the Norton Center for the Arts team. Previously, she worked as a Graphic Designer for Alltech and began her design career at the EKU Center for the Arts. Raven holds a B.F.A. in Graphic Design from Eastern Kentucky University.

Nina Story

Senior Administrative Assistant


Nina joined the Norton Center staff in July 2018. She has over 30 combined years of experience in manufacturing, healthcare and childcare work environments. Before coming to Norton, Nina worked for Ephraim McDowell Health as the Finance and Customer Relations Coordinator for A Children’s Place and was previously a Billing Specialist in the business office. Prior to her work at Ephraim McDowell, Nina worked as an Accountant II for ATR Wire & Cable Co. for more than two decades. As Senior Administrative Assistant, Nina oversees facilities requests and has helped streamline incoming order forms and other monetary filings. Nina resides in Danville and is thankful for her family and the opportunity to work for Centre College, another great organization in the local community.

Crystal Viray

Box Office and Data Coordinator


Crystal Viray became the Box Office and Data Coordinator for the Norton Center in March of 2022. Before joining the Norton Center team, she worked with several companies processing insurance claims including Dental, Property and Casualty, and Life Insurance. Crystal earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a focus on Human Resources, and has worked in such roles as Financial Coordinator and Assistant Bookkeeper in her previous positions. Crystal has always had a passion for the arts, and is excited to have the opportunity to work and live in a community where talent and hard work are so celebrated.