TIFFIN (October 10, 2017) – The recent ribbon cutting ceremonies for the newly constructed Performing Arts Lab (PAL) at Tiffin University culminated a brisk, well-orchestrated eight million dollar capital campaign. The university acquired a fleet of 32 Yamaha instruments to equip its student-run, professional quality recording studio and recording label, a state-of-the-art music technology lab, rehearsal rooms for a wide variety of ensembles, practice rooms, classrooms and performance spaces.
Brad Rees, executive director of Arts Programs and assistant professor of Music and Arts Entrepreneurship at Tiffin University, spearheaded the university’s giant leap forward. Tiffin’s focus on growing its degree programs for music majors in popular and commercial styles of music—coupled with a wealth of extracurricular music activities that attract more than 200 non-major music students—drove Rees’ instrument selection process.
In February 2017, Rees attended the Ohio Music Educators Association conference, intent on securing the pianos and technology to implement the music department’s vision. “All the piano manufacturers were well represented, but Yamaha was the only one that bridged the gap between quality acoustic pianos and cutting-edge music technology, and did both on the same instruments. We have a lot of digital music needs as most of our music students are working towards degrees in that realm,” says Rees. “This is the future. This is where students’ heads are now.”
Rees was pleased to work with Solich Piano and Music Company, the authorized Yamaha dealer for most of Ohio, to acquire two Disklavier ENSPIRE Grand pianos, three U1TA TransAcoustic pianos, one U1SH Silent Piano, six AvantGrand pianos, one NU1 hybrid piano, and a full Clavinova music lab featuring 12 CLP and CVP digital pianos. Each room in the PAL is “wired for sound,” offering students and faculty the capability to record and work together with the 32 Yamaha instruments placed throughout the facility.
“This is a real culture change for us,” says Rees. “We have placed one of the Disklavier pianos, two of the Silent Pianos and four of the Clavinova digital pianos in the PAL rehearsal rooms. The AvantGrand N3X resides in The Marion Center, a manufacturing building adjoining the PAL that was repurposed from its origins as a steel factory. Prospective students see that we offer the same type of degree programs as bigger commercial schools. We now have the technology to compete with the big fish while giving students the individualized attention that’s the hallmark of a small university.”
The second Disklavier reproducing piano is housed at the PAL’s professional recording studio to attract musicians for professional recording projects and to serve a centerpiece role at the student-run recording label. Students will benefit from the Disklavier’s outstanding concert quality acoustic piano as well as its unsurpassed capabilities for multi-layered MIDI functions for recording, playback and editing.
Students will also rely on the digital recording functions of the Yamaha Clavinova pianos in the music technology lab for pre-production work so they enter the recording studio with nearly finished projects. About a dozen students and three music faculty members attended a training session on the functions of the Clavinova lab presented by Lori Frazer, marketing programs specialist for the Yamaha Keyboard division, which focused on how the instruments may be used for songwriting, production and recording, as well as for intensive classroom music instruction.
“All of the pianos at Tiffin are technologically equipped with the proprietary technology that Yamaha has developed to accomplish student learning,” says Dan Rodowicz, national sales manager, Yamaha Institutional Solutions Group. “This selection of instruments is the ideal mix because it offers Tiffin University lasting technological power that will serve the needs of students, faculty and the community for decades to come.”
For more information about the School of Music at Tiffin University in Tiffin, Ohio, please visit www.tiffinmusic.com and www.tiffin.edu. For more information about Yamaha, please visit http://www.yamahaisg.com.