EU raises $ 3 million for Wheeler concert hall renovation

EVANSVILLE, Indiana (WEHT) – After 6 months of fundraising, officials at the University of Evansville have announced that they have reached their goal of $ 3 million for the renovation of the Wheeler Concert Hall. They made the announcement at the start of the Music Conservatory Ensemble Showcase in Neu Chapel, the school’s first live concert in over a year.

“We really needed a nice facility to move into the 21st century and now not only have we made it, but we are getting a state-of-the-art facility, so we’re going to be on the cutting edge when it comes to facilities for our students and a great place for our students to perform, ”said Ken Steinsultz, Co-Director of the Conservatory of Music.

In 2019, a water pipe rupture damaged much of the room. The wooden floors were in ruins, the ceiling was damaged, and the organ was beyond repair. It has since been out of service. But now there is a light at the end of the tunnel for students and music teachers.

“In February, we announced that a major renovation was going to take place at the Wheeler Concert Hall. We had a target of $ 3 million. It seemed like a daunting task in February and to be honest we were around half a million dollars just a few weeks ago. We had one last push and we were able to achieve this goal, ”said Tad Dickel, President of“ Friends of UE Music ”.

The faculty at the Conservatory of Music raved about the cutting-edge additions and changes coming to Wheeler.
There will be brand new modular seats for added convenience, new flooring, variable acoustics for a better concert experience, and a higher ceiling that will help with the sound. Some students said they looked forward to playing in the new venue.

“I think it will bring in a lot more potential students. We can present our new hall and hopefully attract more students who want to do music, music education and music therapy. Anything like that… We will definitely be able to get along a lot better and stay more in tune with each other and be able to stay on top of things a lot better, ”said Lindsey Ostria, a second year transfer student. of the EU.

As quickly as the fundraising has been completed, the renovations should also start quickly.

“We’re going to see things start to move in about a month. They’re going to start doing the auditing and air conditioning in November and other things are being tendered, so we hope to finish them in the spring or early summer, ”added Steinsultz.

According to the EU press release, “Those interested can still nominate a seat in the Wheeler Concert Hall for $ 2,500 if the donation is made by October 31. To make a gift, please visit uealumnionline.com/HaveASeat. “


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