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Leigh Breslau

Chicago, IL      



Leigh Stanton Breslau, AIA, Partner, Trahan Architects


Leigh Breslau, AIA is one of the nation’s emerging designers of performing arts and cultural centers, convention and exhibition centers and urban master plans. In 2010, he partnered with Trey Trahan, FAIA , to open Trahan Architects / Chicago Studio, after nearly three decades of partnership experience in the Chicago Office of SOM, where he focused on arts, public assembly , healthcare projects and planning and urban design. As predominantly civic projects, Mr. Breslau believes public and institutional facilities enhance their environments and spur development, often re-interpreting their cultural and historical surroundings while simultaneously anticipating change and growth. Just as importantly, they are designed “from the inside-out,” creating idealized facilities that support the needs and aspirations of each client.

In addition to his architectural expertise, Breslau completed acclaimed scenic designs for Uncle Vanya, Titus Andronicus, The Wild Duck and Three Tall Women at Chicago’s Court Theatre. He is also a classical pianist, bringing a deep-rooted knowledge and passion for performing arts to his work beyond typical architectural skills.

Breslau’s design experience ranges from the recently completed the City Performance Hall in the Dallas Cultural Arts District, which is part of one of the most ambitious cultural projects in America, to projects like the Combined DePaul Theatre and Music Schools, which explored unique partnerships within the atmosphere of a university program. He led the design for Chicago Symphony Center and Ravinia Festival, the orchestra’s summer home; the design for a new Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center; the Salt Lake County Art Centers; Long Center for the Performing Arts in Austin, TX; the Tempe Performing Arts Center Competition; and the Mills Center for the Arts Competition in Hendersonville, NC. He recently completed the concept design for the Shakespeare Theatre third stage in Chicago and collaborated with Trey Trahan on the Crest band shell in Galvez Plaza, downtown Baton Rouge.

Breslau has also designed innovative state-of-the-art convention centers, including the Virginia Beach Convention Center, McCormick Place North Hall in Chicago and the Suzhou and Zhongshan Convention Centers in China, and is collaborating with Trey Trahan on the design of the Owensboro Convention Center which opened in January 2014 in Kentucky and the Acadia Parish Conference Center in Louisiana.

His master plans include Millennium Park in Chicago which won a National AIA Urban Design Award. He led the Canary Wharf team in London and Tanggu New Town in Tianjin, China. In addition he has completed master plans for Bowdoin College, Bahrain Science City, Elmhurst College PAC, St. Paul’s School, the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools and the Harris School, and Helwan University in Cairo. He recently collaborated with Trey Trahan on the master plan framework and schematic design for the Tulane University Riverfront Center for Coastal and Deltaic Research in New Orleans.

He is a 1978 graduate of Trinity College with a Bachelor of Science in Biology and received a Master of Architecture in 1981 from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a registered Professional Architect in Florida, Illinois, New York and Virginia.