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  5. McIldowie Partners
  6. Diocesan School for Girls Music & Drama Centre / McIldowie Partners

Diocesan School for Girls Music & Drama Centre / McIldowie Partners

  • 19:00 - 31 July, 2018
Diocesan School for Girls Music & Drama Centre / McIldowie Partners
Diocesan School for Girls Music & Drama Centre / McIldowie Partners, © Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

© Patrick Reynolds © Patrick Reynolds © Patrick Reynolds © Patrick Reynolds + 32

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

Text description provided by the architects. Music, drama and dance education is proven to nurture a child’s development. In fact, research has found that learning these creative subjects helps students excel in other subjects and can even increase a child’s IQ[1].

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

Auckland’s Diocesan School for Girls is acutely aware of the benefits of integrating the arts into the student learning experience. The school recently completed their exciting new Music & Drama Centre, which is unsurprisingly located at the heart of their campus.

Site plan
Site plan

Architects McIldowie Partners and Upton Architects wanted to celebrate the school’s award-winning music, drama and dance programmes by designing a new creative home for students.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

“The school’s Music & Drama departments were excelling in their standards of production and performance, but both were accommodated in facilities well below the Diocesan School standard, in adaptively reused buildings,” says Craig Brown, Director of McIldowie Partners.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

“While the classrooms were not hindering education outcomes at the time, the school identified the need to enable a high-level delivery of these important subjects well into the future.”

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

The new building accommodates music practice rooms for soloists, ensembles, orchestras and choirs, and sprung-floor performance studios for drama and dance troupes.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

Acoustically-isolated recording and percussion studios are wired into the performance spaces to professionally capture and engineer the music produced.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

Internally, each windowed doorway offers glimpses at the activities within the rooms, inviting curiosity and ambition. Every student can aspire to be in the band, the orchestra, the chorus.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

Externally, the building design is a deceptively simple three-storey form that sits alongside the school’s splendid Chapel of St Barnabas, built in 1854. The Chapel’s choral legacy is now embodied by its new neighbour. McIldowie Partners and Upton Architects carefully created a contemporary design respectful of the heritage-listed Chapel.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

The architects wrapped the building in a gently faceted ‘curtain’ of perforated aluminium lacework, reflecting the rhythm and movement of music and drama. This subtly undulating veil shifts in tone and shade throughout the day, cleverly filtering the harsh western sun through an intricate woven leaf pattern.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

The Music & Drama Centre is the latest stage in the school’s 15-year masterplan, prepared by McIldowie Partners and Upton Architects in 2005. The building is a key component of Diocesan School for Girls’ continued development of young, world-class musicians, actors and performers.

[1]Schellenberg, E. G. (2006). Long-term positive associations between music lessons and IQ. Journal of Educational Psychology, 98(2), 457-468.

© Patrick Reynolds
© Patrick Reynolds

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Cite: "Diocesan School for Girls Music & Drama Centre / McIldowie Partners" 31 Jul 2018. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/898989/diocesan-school-for-girls-music-and-drama-centre-mcildowie-partners/> ISSN 0719-8884