Fri September 21, 2012
Sprucing up Kleinhans Music Hall
When the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra opens its season tomorrow night, patrons might notice a sharper sound. Renovation work was conducted to Kleinhans Music Hall over the summer. The work has altered the acoustics to its original sound.
A few BPO members were warming up for rehearsal on the main stage Thursday morning. When you enter the auditorium you can smell new carpeting. All the seating -- more than 1,500 seats -- were carefully pulled out for the carpet installation.
"Every one of them had to be removed in order to rip up the carpet. It was a huge endeavor and it took six weeks in all," said Maggie Shea, building services manager at Kleinhans.
Now for the first time in more than 40 years, there is no longer carpeting under the seating, resulting in a much richer sound. The original acoustics first heard when Kleinhans opened in 1940 has returned.
"If you're further into the Hall when it's an empty space, it echoes into ways that it didn't use to," said Shea. "Some of the musicians said that its always wonder space acoustically but that its become so much more alive."
Kleinhans was named a National Historic Landmark in 1989. The renovation work was part of a $700,000 New York State Dormitory Authority grant.
More renovations will be conducted next year expansion of the women's restroom on the lower level and refinishing the stage.