Striving for Higher
Wheaton College aspires to build a new state-of-the-art performing arts center at the heart of campus. God is always calling for a song of praise from his people, and it is therefore vital that music and the arts flourish at the center of Wheaton’s life and community.
In spite of its historical record of outstanding, professional-level accomplishments, the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music has facilities that have long been in critical need of improvement.
Most of the current space suffers from inadequate climate control, poor sound isolation, and insufficient storage. Many practice rooms are too small to adequately protect hearing or to offer optimal acoustics. Choral ensembles rehearse in ill-suited spaces, in which balance, intonation, and other objectives of musical interpretation and performance cannot be fully realized. Finally, the Conservatory of Music operates in six different buildings, built from 1924 to 2008, that are spread out across campus.
The building now being renovated to house the Conservatory of Music was named in honor of the fifth president of Wheaton College, Hudson T. Armerding ’41, upon his retirement. This structure once housed the science and mathematics departments. But music was the heart of the Armerding family. While Miriam Bailey Armerding ’42 graduated from the Conservatory of Music, Hudson also sang in Men’s Glee Club as an undergrad, so it is fitting that the future home the Conservatory of Music will continue to carry the name.
“I am all the more glad that the name is staying with the building. Then, anyone who knows my parents knows that my mother’s life was all about music and the arts. We will all be thinking of her when we see the Armerding Center for Music and the Arts.” —Jonathon Armerding ’72
Jonathan is only one of the many supporters of the new home for Wheaton’s performing arts. He joined the Performing Arts Campaign Cabinet, a group of outstanding individuals with a deep appreciation for the arts. Read more about the Cabinet and meet the members >
The Armerding Center for Music and the Arts Will Feature:
A 600-seat Concert Hall
A 100-seat Recital Hall
Larger teaching studios
Larger practice rooms
Opera/music theater rehearsal spaces
Chamber music rooms
A choral rehearsal hall
A spacious lobby
Academic instructional spaces
Going to Wheaton College was such a firm foundation, and it is a real privilege to sing and do what I love today.- Will Liverman, '10
A new Performing Arts Center would make a statement to the students that what they have chosen, what they have felt called to, matters in the kingdom. It matters in the world.—John William Trotter