Mann Students Show Off New Fine Arts Wing

Professional dance floors, dedicated dressing rooms, convenient and secure instrument storage areas, sound-absorbing walls and a 20-person piano lab are a few of the unique amenities students can take advantage of at Horace Mann’s Arts and Science Magnet Middle School’s $4.3 million Fine Arts wing that was dedicated on Tuesday.

The dedication ceremony included remarks from LRSD Board President Dianne Curry, LRSD Board Member Norma Johnson, Assoc. Superintendent Dr. Daniel Whitehorn, and lead architect Steve Grisham of TAGGART Architects. Student participation included the Parkview High School Color Guard, Mann students Cameron Connor who led the Pledge of Allegiance and Rebekah Harpool who sang the National Anthem, and a performance by the Horace Mann Ensemble. Afterwards, dignitaries and members of the media toured the new facilities with student guides and enjoyed a reception with light refreshments.

Mann began construction on the new music and dance building about a year ago, tearing down two classrooms totaling 3,960 square feet.  There is almost three times more space—11,614 square feet—in the new wing for equipment storage, offices and room for students and teachers to utilize.  The music and dance functions are consolidated around the existing auditorium to place them in proximity of each other.  A piano recital hall was also added to the auditorium which has 77 fixed tiered seats plus four wheel chair accessible positions for a total seating of 81. Two dance studios with dressing rooms and offices, a piano lab with storage space and an office, and a band and orchestra room each with storage rooms, offices, and shared practice rooms were also added to the Fine Arts wing. A new circular entrance canopy was built and the existing exterior corridor on the north side of the auditorium was enclosed to connect the classroom building to the main entrance.