Tufts University Granoff Music Center

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The Best 'Small Hall' In Boston

overview photo From the classrooms, practice rooms and rehearsal spaces to--most significantly--the 300-seat recital hall, the Perry and Marty Granoff Music Center was designed with exquisite attention to acoustical detail. The new 55,000-square-foot facility will allow Tufts students and faculty, along with the wider community, to learn, teach, create, perform and enjoy music in a way that has previously not been possible on campus.

The crown jewel of the $27 million building is the Distler Performance Hall, an acoustically separate "box-within-a-box" that was designed by architects Perkins + Will of Boston to be a showcase for live acoustic performances. The hall is "acoustically sealed"--meaning sounds from without will not interfere with performances, and sounds from within will not interrupt teaching or other functions elsewhere in the building. Even the ventilation and lighting systems have been designed to be silent--no humming, no buzzing, no blowing.

The Music Center will also house a growing world music collection on the lower level, including the West African drums used by associate professor David Locke's Kiniwe West African drum and dance ensemble and the Javanese gamelan, a collection of percussion and other instruments native to Indonesia.

About 1,500 students participate in music classes each year. During the 2005-06 academic year, there were 2,000 course enrollments in the department. Interest in musical performance also has been growing steadily. In 2000, the music department staged between 60 and 65 events a year; last year, it staged 106.

In addition to the performance hall, other features of the Granoff Music Center include:

  • An airy, sky-lit atrium that can serve as a reception area
  • A box office (a new feature for the music department)
  • Three acoustically sealed classrooms, with 65, 35 and 25 seats, respectively
  • 20 faculty offices
  • A multimedia lab with computers
  • Instrument storage areas, with special lockers for larger instruments
  • Practice rooms, including rooms designed specifically for use by percussion and other loud instruments
  • Rehearsal rooms, seminar rooms and ensemble spaces
  • New quarters for the Lilly Music Library, a branch of the Tisch library that includes listening stations and high-density, compressible stacks.
  • A two-story, acoustically separate rehearsal hall located beneath the Distler Performance Hall that can also be used for recitals.
  • A lower-level connection to Cohen auditorium.