THE FORUM AUDITORIUM
500 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101
The historic Forum Auditorium is located adjacent to the Pennsylvania State Library in the Capitol complex. The Building was designed by architects William Gehron and Sidney Ross. The Forum building was dedicated on September 16, 1931.
The building is constructed primarily of gray limestone. There are 22 bronze doors designed by Lee Lawrie. They are cast with figures depicting “man’s creative and re-creative occupations.” Inscribed above each doorway are famous mottos from our nation’s past. On the outside cornice of the building are noted names of Pennsylvania educators, philanthropists and statesmen. On the eaves above those names are sculptured copper owls by Carl Paul Jennewein.
There are eight varieties of marble from Africa, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Tennessee, and Vermont. The designers of the wall and ceiling murals Eric Gugler and Ricard Brooks wanted to depict the march progress of mankind and the overwhelming majesty of the heavens. The maps and adjacent tablets on the upper promenade walls commemorate the socially-significant individuals who made famous the great period of each particular locale. The ceiling was painted on individual canvas sections and decorated with constellations and depictions from the Zodiac. More than one thousand stars are shown in their proper position. Three hundred sixty five are of crystal glass, now illuminated by energy-efficient LED lights. These LED lights were retrofitted in 2008 as part of a Department of General Services Guaranteed Energy Savings Act, (GESA) project. It brought the eighty year old Forum Auditorium up to twenty-first century energy efficiency standards.
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