History & Mission

The Bologna Performing Arts Center at Delta State University was built in 1994 through state funding from the Mississippi legislature. The state-of-the-art facility was built to offer a rich tapestry of cultural and educational programs to serve the entire Mississippi Delta. The Bologna Performing Arts Center, a 41,500 square feet multi-disciplinary facility, first opened its doors on September 1, 1995. The Bologna Center features a full working stage, orchestra lift, and houses two performance venues: the 1,154 seat Delta & Pine Land Theatre and a separate 145 seat Recital Hall.

The Bologna Performing Arts Center has earned recognition as one of the premier houses for entertainment and arts in Mississippi and the Southeast, having received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts and voted the Best Performing Arts Venue in Mississippi by Mississippi Magazine. The Bologna Performing Arts Center attracts quality programming, superb artists and powerful performances to enrich, entertain and strengthen our Delta community.

The Bologna Performing Arts Center offers a variety of cultural and educational programming, providing entertainment that appeals to everyone. Main Stage performances include celebrity concerts, national Broadway tours, dance companies, theater, and family-friendly performances. The Bologna Performing Arts Center also presents School-Time Matinee Series as well as many events hosted by Delta State University and community organizations.

The Bologna Performing Arts Center has a demonstrated commitment to arts education.  Each summer, the Bologna Performing Arts Center hosts the Janice Wyatt Mississippi Summer Arts Institute, which provides a comprehensive training program in all arts disciplines.  The annual School-Time Matinee Series provides new learning opportunities through the performing arts for approximately 10,000 K-12 students each year.  The Bologna Performing Arts Center has also been selected to participate in the Partners in Education program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, offering professional development programs in arts integration for area educators. Other arts education initiatives include after-school programming for area students, literacy initiatives, masterclasses and workshop opportunities.


The Bologna Performing Arts Center at Delta State University brings together artists and audiences to celebrate the arts, to enrich the cultural life of the Delta community, to educate and deepen the appreciation of the arts, and to explore the richness of our world heritage through artistic expression.

Generous Support for the Bologna Performing Arts Center

Performing Arts Building
Dr. and Mrs. N.A. Bologna
Greenville, Mississippi
In memory of Nina and Sam Bologna

Dr. Nino Antony Bologna
11/29/1918 – 10/05/2008
Dr. Nino Antony Bologna, a Greenville, Mississippi dermatologist and pediatrician, helped fund Delta State University’s Bologna Performing Arts Center.  He is remembered for his generosity, work ethic and love for the Delta.  Lifelong friend David “Boo” Ferriss stated, “I shall never forget him talking to me about his desire to do something for the arts in the Delta. After coming to Delta State’s campus and touring the new performing arts building, he was most impressed and could visualize what this center could mean to the arts of the Delta. It was with great pleasure that he and his wife, Betty, made a major gift to the center in memory of their children, Nina and Sam. The people of the Mississippi Delta and Delta State students will continue to enjoy and benefit from their generosity for years to come.”

Main Theatre Area
Delta and Pine Land Company
Scott, Mississippi

Gallery Area
LT Corporation
Cleveland, Mississippi
In honor of Marjorie H. Tims

Lobby Area
Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Ross Capwell & National Community Services, Inc.
Memphis, Tennessee

Main Theatre Stage
Mr. and Mrs. Barney Chiz & Mr. and Mrs. Larry Chiz
Shaw, Mississippi

Recital Hall Stage
Gresham Petroleum Co. & Double Quick, Inc.
Indianola, Mississippi
In memory of John Joyce McPherson and Nadine Tatum McPherson

Upper East Lobby Reception Area
Mary Jane Whittington & Mabelle Garrard White
The Garrard Lounge

Upper West Lobby Reception Area
The Jerome C. Hafter Family
Greenville, Mississippi
In memory of Mary Margaret Fugler Hafter

East Lobby Reception Area
Zulene Ryals Harris, Francis Ryals Terry, Phyllis Ryals McDaniel, Martha Ryals Matlock & Margie Ryals Gerrard
The Ryals Lounge

There are many other opportunities to support the Bologna Performing Arts Center, including:

  • West Lobby Reception Area ($25,000)
  • Conference Room ($25,000)
  • Green Room & Dressing Room Areas ($30,000)
  • Performance sponsorship ($3,000 – $7,000)
  • Series sponsorship ($10,000 – $25,000)

Please contact Laura Howell, Executive Director, at lhowell@deltastate.edu or (662) 846-4624 concerning additional naming opportunities, including programming and Main Stage series support.