Cleveland, OH

Cleveland Institute of Music

Frost Finish on Main Lobby and Hallway Ceilings

Cleveland Institute of Music’s motto, “By any measure, exceptional,” is a perfect description of the $40 million renovation and expansion done on its campus. The project included the construction of the new Mixon Recital Hall, Robinson Music Library, 10 new practice rooms, 4 additional teaching studios, a Media Center, and numerous practice areas. The stunning Mixon Recital Hall seats 259 patrons and is designed to accommodate soloists as well as up to a 27- player ensemble.

The most challenging aspect of this project for the Architectural firm of Westlake Reed Leskosky was the Institute’s insistence on achieving acoustical perfection. The shape as well as interior finishes were centered upon making the sound quality flawless and exact.

Charles Young of WRL worked with Paul Scarbrough and Russ Todd of Akustiks, LLC to analyze the space and review the complex acoustical objectives. They specified the BASWA Phon Seamless Sound Absorbing Plaster System in the lobby area ceilings and hallway ceilings located directly outside of the Recital Hall. This treatment transformed spaces that were acoustically challenged, due to extreme reflections causing excessive reverberation times, into pleasant spaces where sound is highly intelligible. BASWA Phon provided WRL a seamless, smooth, sound-absorbing surface to complement the clean contemporary design that they originally envisioned.



Akustiks noted that the first sound one notices in Mixon Hall is silence. Working with WRL, Akustiks achieved a resplendent marriage of sight and sonics. The beauty of the space, with its sleek blend of wood, glass, smooth walls and concrete, never overwhelms the listening or performing experience.

Certified Installer OCP Contractors, Inc. provided experienced plastering tradesmen who were able to deliver under constraints of a very demanding schedule. Large windows and natural light created a potential "critical lighting nightmare.” The Frosted Finish was installed to dissipate the light and minimize any minor imperfections inherent in all hand troweled products.

OCP's Project Manager, John Hochberg noted, “We were glad we could provide the owner with an exceptional product and finish that changed the dynamics of the space.” The acoustical quality accomplished with this remodel was no accident.

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Cleveland Institute of Music

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