Although its first professor was appointed in 1880, the School of Music was created in 1892 and unofficially existed until 1929, when it was established as a part of the University, according to “The University of Michigan, A Photographic Saga.”

In 1893, the School of Music Building Association, formed by a group of Ann Arbor citizens, raised enough funds to purchase a site at 325 Maynard St., according to the book. In 1905, University students began to receive credit for courses taken at the school.

By 1929 the school outgrew its Maynard location. Low-quality acoustics in many of the rooms meant that recitals had to be held in borrowed locations, and due to high demand, the recitals had to be planned one year in advance, according to the book. In 1936, the school moved to a new site on Ingalls Mall, whose proximity to Hill Auditorium made it a suitable site for rehearsals and performances.

But by 1946, the School of Music once again suffered from a lack of space and resources, according to the book. Instruments were frequently stored in faculty offices, the library had only 28 seats, and practice rooms were limited. Due to the lack of space, the school decided to freeze enrollment at 600 students.

In the 1960s, the University received state funds to construct a new building for the school on North Campus. The commission was given to Finnish architect Eero Saarinen, and the North Campus Music School Building was completed in 1963, according to the book.

The school now boasts 171 practice rooms, 21 classrooms, 46 studios for teaching, 25 faculty offices, two rehearsal halls, a library, audition studios and recording rooms.

In 2006, the School of Music was renamed the School of Music, Theatre & Dance.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.