Missouri State University in Springfield held a dedication ceremony and open house over the weekend to give people a look at the $14 million renovation of Ellis Hall, the campus music building.
KSMU Radio reports that community members took self-guided tours of the facility and listened to performances by Missouri State’s Chorale and brass band.
Shawn Wahl, interim dean of the College of Arts and Letters, says the upgraded facility will enable Missouri State to be a “destination school” for the arts.
“We are the front porch of the performing arts to the community,” Wahl says. “So when prospective students and members of the community come in to observe performances, (Ellis) really has the ‘wow factor’ that we were looking for.”
The university says the $14 million upgrade of Ellis Hall, built in 1959, centered on improving the facility’s acoustic conditions, re-configuring space and updating material finishes. A new, energy-efficient curtain wall and rain screen system replaced original windows and glass.
This summer, construction crews finished framing windows and installing glass, lighting and drywall. The building also has an upgraded roof, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration and other mechanical systems.
Ellis Hall was closed during 2016-17 while the renovations were carried out. Classrooms, and administrative and faculty offices were temporarily moved to leased space in a nearby shopping center.