In the music department in Goodwin Hall, 26 practice rooms are located and overflowing with music majors, ensembles and students. These practice rooms are home to pianos, drums and percussion rooms that allow for Auburn students to have a place to go and exercise their musical talents.
The Goodwin Hall practice rooms have been around since the music department was built back in 1974. Contributed by James and Virginia Goodwin, these halls have been home to a long lineage of musical masterminds.
James Goodwin, engineer and Auburn graduate of the class of 1927, was always in favor of building and donating a contemporary space for music practice, teaching and production. During the 1972 Iron Bowl, the story is told that Goodwin placed a bet on Auburn against Alabama with President Harry Philpott that Goodwin would fund the second half of the music department if Auburn won. Not only did Auburn come out victorious, but a million dollars was contributed shortly after to the department in Goodwin’s name.
The practice rooms are open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for every student on campus regardless of major. However, hours extend for music major students, who have access to the rooms through their Tiger Card 24 hours a day. The practice rooms also have no time limit to students. Once the room is occupied, students are allowed to stay for as long as they choose.
“Practice rooms are necessary for all music majors and even the ensembles on campus," said Sarah Ferguson, coordinator of the Auburn University Bands. "They can be found at every university, but by having Auburn open them up to every student creates a nice place for everyone to be able to play.”
Students who use the practice rooms say they have allowed for them to have their own personal space outside of everything that goes on during college.
“The best part about the practice rooms is that they allow me to shut everything off from what is going on in my life and go somewhere to just focus my time on practicing,” said Sarah Niedzwiecki, junior in music education and drum major for Auburn’s band.
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The practice rooms are all soundproof, which allows for the artist to hear only themselves and the music that they are playing.
“Practicing in these rooms has allowed for me to grow more as an artist because of the privateness of it," Niedzwiecki said. "People can’t hear me, and in some rooms can’t see me from the angle, allowing for me to practice performing for just myself instead of in front of other people.”
The rooms in Goodwin all also allow for people to practice outside of their usual rehearsal times for ensemble or the band.
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