University of Iowa shows off new temporary classes and studios - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

University of Iowa shows off new temporary classes and studios

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) - The University of Iowa was hit hard by flood waters last June, and students and professors are still, more than a year later, settling in to new homes.

Students and professors in both the art and music departments are getting comfortable in their new spaces, and have given them a ringing endorsement.

"The new facilities are really nice compared to last year," said Sophomore Philip Walker, majoring in piano. He told us the new recital hall in the Old Capitol Mall is a large improvement. After last June's flood, he and other students were cramped, far away from campus, and working in less-than-ideal acoustic conditions.

"Buildings weren't sound-proof, and you know, we could hear cars going by the street and sirens."

But, this new set of music studios and classrooms are built with soundproof windows and walls. The same goes for the new private practice rooms. Bassoon professor Benjamin Coelho showed us his studio, equipped with "virtual acoustics." It's a system that records an instrument's sound through microphones in the walls, then plays it back in different ways.

"It's a recording that has a delay, almost like a guitar has pedals," Coelho explained. "Rock guitars have different pedals to produce different sounds." Coelho says it can make an instrument sound "dry", making it easier for him to hear mistakes. Or, it can produce reverberation, making it sound like he's playing in a concert hall.

In the Iowa Memorial Union, the Museum of Art is open for student use. Campus space planner Diane Machatka says finding all of these new temporary class spaces was a challenge.

"It was a fun challenge," she said. "It was a good experience, in the sense that lots of people came together, and lots of people felt very keenly the importance of solving these problems and solving them right away."

It seems to have paid off, because students appear to be living and learning, much like they did before last June.

The student display hall for the School of Art and Art History is now located in the Hillel House. Offices and classrooms for the Division of Performing Arts are at the former Phi Kappa Theta house.

Online Reporter - Brady Smith

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