Music building sets tune for innovation

Cody Mcgehee | The Ranger Piano instructor Dr. Jim Rauscher leads a private piano lesson with theater major Alex Hernandez.

The sound of a violin, the smell of new paint on the wall and the wooden lockers in the lounge: these are just a few things that are in the newly renovated Amarillo College Music Building.

In it’s second year after the renovation and with more than 300 students in ensembles that include the Concert Choir, the Master Chorale, the community band and the jazz band, the building has had many improvements to help with the education of AC and other local students. IMG_4251

“I’ve taken so many people on a tour of the new building,” said Dr. Steven Weber, music department chair. “I’m very proud of it,”

For those who haven’t had a chance to see the new building, there is a newly constructed band room with specialized lockers for instruments. There are new practice rooms with state-of-the-art recording equipment that uses Pro Tools software, a digital workstation used to record and edit music, film scores and more.

Tiffany McDaniel, a music department administrative assistant, said every practice room is wired into the recording studio.

“For a community college, we have a lot to offer,” McDaniel said. “We have the most technically advanced music buildings in the area.”

The building has also been upgraded with digital cabling, giving instructors and students with the ability to mix master CDs. Some of the ensembles have decided to take advantage of the new software and recording equipment.

“We are working with the recording arts program and (music instructor) Scott Beckett to record original music,” Dr. Jim Laughlin, professor of recording arts, winds, jazz band and theory, said. “We plan to release a CD later in the year.”

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