Opening this summer, the WWE state-of-the-art Performance Center will serve as the new home to WWE’s talent developmental system, recently re-branded NXT and create nearly 100 high-wage jobs in Orlando.
Officials from WWE, Full Sail University, NXT and Florida government participated in a wallbreaking ceremony on Thursday, April 18 in Orlando. Fittingly, with Paul Triple H Levesque helping lead the charge, several grabbed sledge hammers -- instead of shovels -- to christen the area.
With 26,000 square-feet, seven training rings, a world-class strength and conditioning program and cutting-edge edit and production facilities, the new Performance Center will give WWE the ability to train more potential performers than ever before through a comprehensive program including in-ring training, physical preparedness and character development.
The new center will be the training ground for talent that includes former professional and collegiate athletes, Olympians and entertainers. It will also offer a best-in-class sports medicine program creating a central location for all WWE talent to receive the best care both in and out of the ring.
“Our economy has created nearly 300,000 new private sector jobs in just over two years, meaning that thousands of Florida families now have the opportunity to pursue their dreams,” Florida Governor Rick Scott said. “WWE could have chosen anywhere in the world to house this new global performance center – and they chose the Sunshine State. [The] announcement that WWE will create nearly 100 more jobs for families in Central Florida is further proof that everything we do is geared toward job creation, and it’s working.”
Teresa Jacobs, Mayor of Orange County which includes Orlando, added: “We are so excited that WWE has chosen to establish its training and talent development operations in Central Florida. In addition to strengthening our burgeoning entertainment production industry, the WWE Performance Center brings high-value jobs, capital investment and continued economic expansion to our area.”
The announcement solidifies WWE’s presence in Orlando and evolves WWE’s partnership with Full Sail University in Winter Park, just outside Downtown Orlando. Last year, WWE and Full Sail announced an innovative partnership that moved live tapings of WWE NXT series -- WWE’s weekly one-hour show that broadcasts on WWE.com and in more than 60 countries worldwide -- to Full Sail Live, the university’s state-of-the-art performance venue.
The partnership, which created a new student scholarship fund, allows students of the university’s entertainment-focused degree programs, including Film, Show Production, Digital Arts and Design, Internet Marketing and Entertainment Business, to gain real-world experience alongside WWE production staff during WWE NXT tapings.
“The WWE Performance Center and our partnership with Full Sail University are critical to the future of our company,” said Paul Triple H Levesque, Executive Vice President, Talent and Live Events, WWE. “Orlando is now the [official] home to the next generation of WWE Superstars.”
Garry Jones, President of Full Sail University, said: “Collaborating with WWE has elevated the education experience here at Full Sail University by creating many opportunities for our students to gain hands-on experience by being mentored by some of the best minds in the entertainment production industry. We are excited to welcome WWE to the neighborhood and can't wait to see what the future holds for this evolving partnership.”
WWE NXT is taped periodically at Full Sail University. NXT also travel throughout Florida and Georgia conducting fun, family-friendly house shows (no TV). The shows include current and future WWE superstars and divas.
Nearly 50 superstars and divas currently on the WWE roster traveled through the doors of NXT, formerly FCW in Tampa, to hone their craft. They include Aksana, Wade Barrett, Evan Bourne, Daniel Bryan, Camacho, Cameron, Antonio Cesaro, Brodus Clay, Johnny Curtis (Fandango), Bo Dallas, Ted DiBiase, Alberto Del Rio, Epico, Alicia Fox, Justin Gabriel, Hunico, Kaitlyn, Tyson Kidd, Big E. Langston, AJ Lee, Brad Maddox, Jinder Mahal, Michael McGillicutty, Drew McIntyre, Rosa Mendes, Naomi, Natalya, Titus O’Neil, David Otunga, Primo, Ricardo Rodriguez, Alex Riley, Damien Sandow, Sheamus, Skip Sheffield (Ryback), Heath Slater, Tamina Snuka, Jack Swagger, Yoshi Tatsu, Jey and Jimmy Uso and Darren Young.
They’ve learned from a Who’s Who talent pool which includes Dusty Rhodes, Ricky Steamboat, Bill DeMott, Norman Smiley, Billy Gunn, Terry Taylor, Joey Mercury, Sara Del Ray and Steve Keirn.
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