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Voxman School of Music

The University of Iowa Voxman School of Music celebrates performance at every turn, embracing a collaborative and exploratory student-driven model of education. The building shares this sense of musical discovery with the community through the creation of a building that is as transparent as possible.

The project comprises a 700-seat concert hall, a 200-seat recital hall, an organ performance hall, a music library, rehearsal rooms, practice rooms, classrooms, and faculty studios, and offices.

The glazed corner entry reinforces the fusion between campus and city, with the two major performance venues marking their presence on each of the main facades. The 700-seat concert hall cantilevers boldly over the Burlington Street sidewalk and the Student Commons below, while the 200-seat recital hall is wrapped in a unique, shingled-glass wall system that extends over the South Clinton Street sidewalk. The fourth-floor exterior terrace is nestled behind and between the wings of the rear facade, serving as an elegant gathering space that frames views to the city and historic courthouse.

The six-story building is situated between the campus and the downtown core of Iowa City, embracing both academic and urban experiences. The exterior of the building is wrapped in a composition of subtly textured and delicately reflective terra cotta panels and low-iron glass. The rich variety found in the terra cotta panel system is created using only two modules with two different combinations of finishes and textures. Additionally, a unique twisted terra cotta panel is used as part of the sun shading system.

Inside, virtually every space is acoustically tuned and tunable to accommodate a wide range of performances, from voice to percussion to classical to jazz. Between the performance spaces, three major gathering areas are linked by daylit circulation volumes to form the student commons, a performance and rehearsal lobby, and a three-story atrium. The state-of-the-art building meets the needs of today while exploring a vision of music education and performance for the future.

Project Type: Education

Location: Iowa City, Iowa

Size: 267,000 SF

Completed: 2016

Collaborators: Design Architect: LMN Architects

LEED Rating: Gold

Awards: 2018 AIA Iowa Craft Award

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