With pandemic parameters all around us, it’s a challenge for music students and staff to find appropriate space for individual or small group practice.

One solution is a private practice room. Wenger Corporation has seen many schools nationwide taking advantage of ESSER funds in 2021 to buy music equipment, such as SoundLok® Sound-Isolation Rooms. They’re the perfect, private, safe place for individual practice and come with built-in ventilation systems which can be connected to an existing HVAC system. Air constantly circulates, cycling clean air into the room about every 2 minutes.

SoundLok rooms are 25% quieter than any other on the market. They help a student practice the flute without being blasted by the trumpet next door. SoundLok rooms are being used at high schools and colleges nationwide to help students improve their singing and playing.

The rooms use VAE digital signal processing technology, which offers incredibly realistic acoustical simulations, creating the sensation of being in various performance venues, from a small auditorium to a cathedral to a large recital hall. The technology allows the musicians to record and playback their practice sessions, helping them adapt and improve their performance. Those recordings also can be downloaded to other devices for sharing or performing accompaniments.

“For singers, the acoustics of a room are like the body of our instrument: We need it to help us sound our best,” explains Kalle Akkerman, Austin High School Choir Director in Austin, Minnesota. “When the music sounds good, it makes us feel good and brings us a sense of togetherness.”  

VAE technology allows music directors to follow the assessment strategy recommended in the National Standards for Music Education and increase their ability to evaluate the progress of more students in less time.

“The students love this technology,” says Penny Gustafson, assistant director of housing and business operations at the University of North Texas in Denton, where several SoundLok rooms are installed in the basement of a dorm. “They particularly enjoy being able to record themselves and track progress over the course of the semester or year. Our music professors also like listening to their students’ recordings to then offer feedback.”

By Erin Mathe

Learn more at www.wengercorp.com

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2020 State of the Association

Full of challenge and change, 2020 was like no other year. NSBA's State of the Association provides a snapshot of the association's advocacy and member services work as well as our ongoing transformation.