Utah Shakespeare Festival
Artist rendering of the new $26.5 million Shakespeare Theatre on the campus of Southern Utah University in Cedar City.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Shakespeare Festival Friday announced that it had received $500,000 in funding from the Utah Legislature.

The money will be used to help build a 900-seat, $26.5 million Shakespeare Theater in Cedar City near the Southern Utah University campus.

Thus far, about $18.5 million has been raised, according to a news release. Upon completion, the new facility will allow the festival to stage more performances and extend its season, thereby potentially increasing attendance by up to 25 percent or 30,000 patrons.

The Utah Shakespeare Festival currently attracts almost 120,000 patrons each year.