A plan of note
Selection of UI School of Music designer highlights performing arts' year
LMN Architects of Seattle has been selected to join Iowa City Architect-of-Record Neumann-Monson for the design of a new home for the University of Iowa School of Music.
LMN designed Benaroya Hall, home of the Seattle Symphony, as well as the eastern section of the Vancouver Convention Center, which is adjacent to the Canada Place convention center featured in broadcast coverage of the 2010 Winter Games. The firm also designed Prebys Music Center, a $53 million facility completed on the University of California–San Diego campus.
UI President Sally Mason said having top architects on board for two major performing arts facilities—Pelli Clarke Pelli for Hancher and LMN for the School of Music—is an important and positive step toward returning programs struck especially hard by the 2008 floods to permanent homes.
“We are positioning our campus for complete recovery from the 2008 flood. Additionally, we are taking advantage of the opportunity to advance the established success of our arts programs by designing state-of-the-art facilities that will define creativity in the university for generations to come,” Mason said. “LMN is renowned for their music and performing arts design work, and they are just the right fit for this important and transformational project. We look forward to them joining our team.”
The School of Music was displaced in June 2008 when the Iowa River flooded much of the UI arts campus, including Hancher Auditorium, Voxman Music Building and Clapp Recital Hall. After considering repair and replacement options, the UI, the Board of Regents and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) identified replacement as the most responsible option for those facilities.
The School of Music will be housed on two adjacent sites on the southeast and southwest corners of the Clinton-Burlington intersection, pending the successful conclusion of land acquisition negotiations. To view a map of the School of Music site, see http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2010/january/images/011410music-proposed-site.jpg. The new Hancher, meanwhile, will be built on higher ground near the existing HVC site and designed by New Haven, Conn.-based firm Pelli Clarke Pelli, with a tentative completion date of spring 2015.
Hancher continues "uncontainable" spirit
The "Can't Contain Us!" spirit once again infused the 2010–11 Hancher season as the university's performing arts organization presented world-class artists in venues throughout the community and the state.
Highlights of the season included a staging of the classic Broadway musical Fiddler on the Roof in Cedar Rapids, a performance by breakthrough jazz artist Esperanza Spalding, the Merce Cunningham Dance Company's "Legacy Tour" stop in Iowa City, and the world premiere of a collaborative effort by Hancher, "certified lunatic and master of the impossible" Tomás Kubínek, and Orchestra Iowa titled Professor Kubínek Meets the Symphony. This last production was performed in Iowa City as well as smaller Iowa communities and Omaha, Neb.