Miami's Carnival Center for the Performing Arts will be renamed the Adrienne Arscht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County. The name change follows a $30 million dollar donation from Arscht, a business leader and philanthropist.

The Center will receive the $30 million over the next three years. An initial $13 million will be used for center programming ($4 million), paying a bank loan ($7 million) and refunded to Carnival as part of the termination of their commitment ($2 million).

Arscht's donation brings solid financial footing and optimism to the beleaguered center. Opened barely a year ago, the Carnival (so-called because of Carnival
Cruise Line's $20 million donation to the project) faced scrutiny since its inception because of its enormous cost ($461 million) and scope, which many said was too ambitious for Miami. The Center, a modern structure designed by architect Cesar Pelli and funded with public and private monies, consists of two large buildings--a 2,400 seat opera house and a 2,200 seat concert hall, as well as a 200 seat small theater-- straddling Miami's downtown Biscayne Boulevard.

Last October, the center ended its first year of operation with a $2.5 million deficit, according to published reports. This led to the firing of its president and chief executive, Michael C. Hardy, and to the resignation of its programming director.

Lawrence J. Wilker, a former CEO of the Kennedy Center, was brought in as interim president and CEO. Wilker had previously collaborated with Arsht in his Kennedy days when she served as chair of Kennedy Center Productions, Inc.

"The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts now has all the tools it needs to emerge as one of the great performing arts centers of our time," said Wilker of the donation.