Walking down the stairs of the CA basement, I clutch my keys to my violin locker as I go to Chamber Orchestra. But as I march down the stairs, the dissonance of high pitch vocal vibrations and rhythmic violin solos echo throughout what was supposed to be the quiet hallway. The practice rooms under the CA basement are offered to both vocalists and instrumentalists to improve and enhance their skills for any upcoming auditions, rehearsals, performances, or concerts. Nonetheless, the practice room does not do justice to the talented Muhlenberg students: they are not soundproof, in poor condition, and lacking in numbers.
The number one priority should be to block out the sounds coming from the practice rooms. In each room students are trying to master pieces or parts that are essential for beautiful performances. But, due to inadequate practice rooms, their sounds leak into adjacent rooms and even out in the hallways. Sometimes lessons are held inside the practice rooms, and students cannot learn without being disrupted by their fellow peers. It is tragic that students’ concentrations are all too often ruined due to a lack of soundproofing. Hence, it is with most urgent desire that some actions are taken to enhance and improve the sound proofing systems inside the practice rooms so students no longer inadvertently disrupt each other.
On top of that, the practice rooms are also in poor condition. The existing sound boards are tearing apart, the tiles are chipped, and some of the tiles are even missing. This displays a lack of professionalism, especially to prospective students visiting Muhlenberg for auditions. In order to warm up, one must enter these most depressingly conditioned practice rooms, and when those prospective students see them, surely they will only be able to think negatively toward the College as a whole. By renovating the practice rooms to optimal conditions, and even beautifying the rooms, not only will the prospective students look with positive viewpoint, but also current students will be more motivated to practice inside the room.
Finally, there are just too few practice rooms to incorporate both vocalists and instrumentalists. Vocalists and Instrumentalists often have to prepare for auditions, rehearsals, and performances/concerts. Most of the time, the dates for such occasions overlap one group after another. Hence, even if many of the students are eager to improve, neither group can use the practice rooms at the same time. I propose that two separate practice room areas are made so that vocalists and instrumentalists can have practice rooms at the same time.
Many of the complains have been made by students, and some music faculty members may have heard such negative feedbacks, yet still no actions have been taken after several years of being in this state. We as students, have the right to receive better facilitated practice rooms so that our musical career is not hindered by the outside environment — Muhlenberg desperately needs to renovate and expand the practice rooms to better serve its students.