COCA has activated the power of arts education in the heart of our St. Louis community for over 30 years. To leverage that power to meet our shared needs today and fulfill the potential of tomorrow, it’s time to grow.

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Join us in creating our future


For a personal conversation about COCA’s future, please contact:

Kelly Pollock
Executive Director

Pam Mandelker
Director of Advancement

As we know from three decades of experience, the impact of a promise kept extends across generations.

With your help, we will raise $45 million to support the construction of our facility expansion as well as build capital reserves and endowment funds for scholarships, support services, artistic and educational programming. The ambitious project positions COCA to meet evolving community needs and serve its growing student base, while also sustaining its long-term commitment to ensuring access.

As a community, we will do all of this together.

Renovated Kuehner West Wing Facilities – Completed June 2018

  • Staenberg Performance Lab, a sunlit central studio, rehearsal hall, and performance space restoring the original architecture of Mendelsohn’s sanctuary.
  • Dierbergs Kitchen at COCA – a state-of-the-art space to be used for culinary programs in addition to hosting and serving events.
  • More than 3500 square feet of renovated multi-disciplinary studio space, including two new dance studios, Peacock Studio and Emerson Studio, and the new Gold Art & Design Studio equipped with tools to foster exploration and creativity.

New Ferring East Wing Facilities

  • A state-of-the-art theatre (450+ seats) to both meet COCA’s growing performance needs as well as expand opportunities to host local and touring visiting artists. It will be named in honor of the Berges Family Foundation.
  • 4,600 square feet of new multi-disciplinary studio space for COCA’s growing programs, including its nationally accredited programs in dance, theatre, voice, and early childhood.
  • New community space – located throughout the project – to create a more hospitable, welcoming second home for COCA’s families and visitors.
  • A designated, safe, and accessible drop-off and pick-up configuration offering an alternative to short-term garage and street parking.

News & Updates

COCA Completes Renovation Phase of $29M Create Our Future Expansion, Announces $5 Gift from Kim Kuehner

COCA – Center of Creative Arts today unveiled significant renovations to its historic Erich Mendelsohn-designed University City building and announced a $5 million gift to its Create Our Future Campaign from Kim Kuehner, a St. Louis philanthropist and retired business owner. This most recent gift brings the total raised to $41 million to fund the community organization’s plans to grow its University City campus and build its endowment and reserves.

Read More Here

Campaign Leadership & Project Team

Launched quietly in early 2015, the campaign is spearheaded by a 12-member Steering Committee chaired by Cheryl Holman, with Honorary Chairs Alison and John Ferring. Meet the Create Our Future campaign leadership and project team.

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