A sneak peek into the new concert hall

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Claire Meng

The view from on stage. The seats for the hall were delayed due to COVID-19 shipment issues. Photo by Claire Meng.

Claire Meng

 

On Jan. 24, 2022, Nordic reporters got an exclusive first look into the Northshore concert hall. 

At the start of 2020, construction started on the concert hall, located on the west side of campus. Backed by the 2018 bond, this project includes the facility, new equipment and enhanced technology needed to host district performances.

This 35,194 sq ft structure contains not only a concert hall, but also an area for music classrooms. There are specially-designed instrumental and choir classrooms along with six individual practice rooms. According to NSD Construction Projects Manager Brian Jones, the building is designed to maximize acoustics while remaining energy efficient. 

“Everything that they did here, if it isn’t a material that absorbs or reflects sound, it’s an efficient material,” Jones said. “The whole building is on occupancy sensors: that includes the lights and [heating, ventilation, and air conditioning]. Somebody walks in, it’ll start heating.”

On the other side of the building, the hall itself holds 750 seats and an approximately 1750 sq ft stage. Despite delays and rising prices during the pandemic, the building checks in under its budget of around $40 million. The funding also covers the costs of multiple pianos and percussion instruments. 

Music classes are scheduled to begin in the new building on Feb. 1, the start of the new semester. Originally, this was scheduled to happen at the start of the 2021-2022 school year. According to Jones, COVID-19 restrictions were not what hindered the construction process since most work was done in separate areas of the building. Instead, stormwater issues caused the bulk of the delays.

“They had to redesign the whole stormwater system around the whole area,” said Jones. “And that added about a six month delay.”

The hall will mainly be used for district performances, but it may accommodate guest soloists and groups in the future. According to the band and orchestra teacher Charlie Fix, Inglemoor was the last high school in the district to get a designated performance space. 

“I really feel that having this concert hall space and these new rehearsal room spaces are going to bring our facility up to the level that our student musicians are already at, so just having that facility on our campus—it’s a real game changer for us,” said Fix.