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Eastman Community Music School plans to build new home with $2.8 million

Eastman Community Music School

New studios and classroom spaces are coming to the Eastman Community Music School.

That’s because the school announced it has received $2.8 million to renovate Messinger Hall

Currently, Associate Dean of the Eastman Community School Peter Kodzas says that space isn’t designed to host a music school. The school is spread out across the Eastman block on Gibbs Street.

"That’s going to actually be our home. So finally, we will have all of our teaching in the same place. Students who perform and come for lessons will be able to see other students and communicate with them. So I think it’s going to be great place for parents and for students to build community."

The community school serves 1,600 students of all ages in the Rochester area.

Dean of the Eastman School of Music, Jamal Rossi said they’ve been planning this renovation for more than a decade; with plans to gut the third and fourth floors, add over 20 teaching studios, a key board lab and more.

Rossi said the community school is key to Eastman’s mission.

"We believe very strongly that the future of music is tied closely to the impact that we have in the community where we live. And that’s what we try to work with our collegiate students - to say that their futures are dependent on the impact that they have in their own communities."

The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council gave the school a $450,000 grant for the renovations. The rest of the funding came from various foundations and donors.

Construction will start January 1st and the new school will be open by the fall 2018 semester.