Renting The Z

Zeiders American Dream Theater (The Z) is a professional, non-profit theater that introduces new works and emerging artists, presents unique artistic experiences, and inspires creative growth in the Hampton Roads Community. 

The Z hosts a variety of rental events each year, ranging from full performances and fashion shows to receptions and meetings. The Z has a state-of-the-art facility, technical equipment and professional event staff to support all kinds of events. 

The Zeiders American Dream Theater facility is located in Virginia Beach, VA in the heart of the Virginia Beach Town Center. The facility features a Main Stage Theater and a flexible black box-style Studio Theater, each outfitted with premium technical capabilities and support spaces. Free parking garages located close to the theater for convenient parking for guests. 

Stage Spaces

Main Stage Theater Overview:

  • Max occupancy: 310 (excluding stage)
  • ~840 ft² thrust stage 
    • Full Stage: Approx. 24’ wide by 34’ 6” deep (downstage edge to back wall)
    • Stage Thrust: Approx. 24’ wide x 22’ deep from downstage edge of stage to downstage wall of proscenium
  • 299 fixed seats in 3-sided stadium seating
  • Sprung stage floor, motorized projection screen for presentations and films, full stage black or cyc for backdrop, mid stage traveler, projections onto cyc or proscenium walls, LED theatrical lighting, professional sound reinforcement, and HD A/V recording capabilities 

Studio Theater Overview: 

  • Max occupancy: 148 (including stage)
  • ~2,000 ft² (50’-0” x 41’-10”) flexible black box space that can be configured for performances, smaller meetings, or rehearsals and classes
  • Seated capacity of up to 100
  • Features LED theatrical lighting, professional sound reinforcement, projector and screen for presentations, fully sprung room floor, and HD A/V recording capabilities

Backstage support includes:

  • Street level loading dock with freight elevator
  • Green Room with 8ft hospitality table; sink
  • 2 dressing rooms with 10-person occupancy, each equipped with a private restroom and shower.
  • Z rolling racks to hang clothing, hangers provided by renter

Optional equipment for either theater:

  • Metal stage platforms (4’ x 8’ and 1’ high)
  • Lectern
  • Yamaha CF-III concert grand piano
  • Yamaha U3 upright piano
  • Pipe and drape


Combined area approx 3,660 sq. ft.


  • Max occupancy: 244 
  • Approx. 2,400 sq. ft.
  • Our Main Lobby is surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows on two sides
  • Optional rentable outdoor terrace overlooking the Town Center Fountain Plaza


  • Max occupancy: 77
  • Approx. 680 sq. ft.
  • Our Studio Lobby is surrounded by floor to ceiling windows on two sides


Available for Either or Both Lobbies:

  • Pipe and drape
  • 8ft tables
  • 6ft tables
  • Table linens
  • Up to 16 cocktail tables - standing or sitting height
  • Up to five benches
  • Up to ten easels
  • Additional rolling bar with two rolling ice carts
  • Main Stage Theater concessions stand
  • Lobby Music
  • Sound support for live music (only one lobby at a time)
  • One triangle-shaped corner stage (isosceles right triangle)
    • 16” high with a 8” step
      • Small Layout: 8’ x 8’ x 11’ - 4”
      • Large Layout: 12’ x 12’ x 17’

rental steps

  • Date, time, how many performers, and theater space of request 
  • Organization name with website if applicable
  • Contact name, phone number, and email address
  • Detailed description of the type of event; Run of Show or breakdown of your event (hourly breakdown of event details); how many guests will be attending
  • Set up a meeting tour with the Patron Manager and our Z Tech staff to chat about your rental needs. At the tour you can chat with our tech staff about your tech needs and they can recommend what packages you will need to choose when filling out the Rental Request form. 
  • If you need a preview or demo of certain technical elements, please contact the Patron Manager and Z Tech staff so that we can be prepared to do so as part of your initial meeting. Note: not all technical elements are available to be demoed, and tech demos cannot take place without advance notice.
  • After the meeting tour and the recommendations from our tech staff, you will fill out our Rental Request form with all of your rental needs.
  • We will get back to you with an estimated quote. 
  • If the quote is good and no edits needed, your event will go on our calendar, we will draw up a contract for you to sign and send you an email of all other info needed. 
  • At time of signing, your 50% deposit will be due.
  • Team Walkthrough
    • After the contract is signed, the date is on the Z calendar and deposit is paid. You can request one other meeting at The Z with your team and any third party vendors you need to get eyes on the building. This does not include any tech staff or tech testing, rehearsal, etc. Your team can get eyes on the building to know where and how they will be setting up for your event. 
  • Final Walkthrough
    • Final walkthrough of the building with the Patron Manager and Z Tech staff to go over everything on your contract, your Run of Show, and all tech and Front of House details on your contract, 2-4 weeks before your event to make sure we are all on the same page.
  • Rehearsal time in the space for an event must be scheduled during rental hours. Renter is responsible for including in their rental the time needed for rehearsing if necessary.
  • Testing of any technical aspects of the rental (ie: projections, music or other audio, and lighting) must be done during your rental hours. Renter is responsible for including in their rental the time needed to check any technical aspects if necessary.
  • For Production level rentals, lighting and audio cue programming, as well as sound checks must be scheduled during rental hours. Programming is estimated to take at minimum the length of the stage event plus 30 minutes (complex shows or shows lacking clear run-of-show information may take longer). The more prepared you are, the quicker we can work. Programming can be completed on a different day from the event, but sound checks must be the day of the event.
  • For every consecutive 4 hours of a rental, a 15 minute break must be included for our technical staff. Rentals over 8 hours must include a 60-min break for our technical staff.
  • Renters may bring scenic elements in for their events, however, they may not be hung in the theater, block emergency exits, or block egress paths as determined by the fire marshall. Scenic elements may not be screwed or lagged to the stage deck unless advanced permission has been given.
  • A 50% non-refundable deposit is required at time of signing the contract.
  • Your final payment is due 3 days before your event.
  • If applicable to you, we will need before your event: Event Insurance, Community Events application status, ABC license, Non-Profit status paperwork, and your signed contract.

For rental inquiries:

  • Email Donna Minson, Patron Manager who handles all rental needs.
  • Rental process takes some time, please allow a minimum of a month preferably or more to start this process due to The Z having our own shows and rehearsals. 
    • Please note: The event calendar on our website does not reflect all events, shows, and rehearsals that take place in our theater and lobby spaces.

forms & additional info