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The Voice of the Tyrone Area High School

Tyrone Eagle Eye News

The Voice of the Tyrone Area High School

Tyrone Eagle Eye News

New TAHS Auditorium Opens to Public on Thursday

A community open house begins at 6 pm followed by a free concert by the Tyrone Bands at 7 pm

The wait is finally over.

The $4 million dollar renovation of the Tyrone High School auditorium will open to the public for the first time on Thursday, November 30 from 6 pm to 7 pm.

Members of the Altoona Brass Collective will perform holiday selections during the open house.

The open house will be followed by a performance by the Tyrone Middle and High School Concert Band, Jazz Band, and a finale performance by the Golden Eagle Marching Band.  The concert will begin at 7 pm.

The event is free to the public, but guests are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item for the Eagle Eye Food Drive in support of the Tyrone Food Bank.

The project began in June 2022 and was scheduled to be complete by August 2023, but supply shortages pushed the completion date back several times.

According to Tyrone Director of Matenanece Jordan Good, the last major task for the auditorium was to set the rooftop HVAC unit on the MS roof and get it operational.

One of the most remarkable aspects of this renovation project is the attention to detail during the planning and design phases.

Prior to the complete renovation, the auditorium space was largely original to the building, which opened in 1962.

The auditorium was vintage from when the school was built. Not a lot has been done to it since then. All the seats were falling apart, and we couldn’t find replacement parts for them. The acoustics were not great, the sound system was shot, the lighting system was shot, and the AV system was shot. So it really needed a full restoration.

— Architect James Keiffer

The new space was designed by project architect James Keiffer of KCBA Architects of Hatfield, PA.  The firm specializes in schools and public facilities and also designed the current Altoona Area High School.

According to Keiffer, the auditorium space was long overdue for a major renovation.

“The auditorium was vintage from when the school was built. Not a lot has been done to it since then. All the seats were falling apart, and we couldn’t find replacement parts for them,” said Keiffer. “The acoustics were not great, the sound system was shot, the lighting system was shot, and the AV system was shot. So it really needed a full restoration.”

The auditorium received a cosmetic upgrade in the late 1990s, but most of the mechanics, including the electrical, lighting, and sound systems were original to the building, which was constructed in 1962.

Keiffer said that the most expensive and significant part of the renovation won’t be seen by visitors to the new auditorium, but it will be heard.

“One of the major complaints we had was the mechanical noise in the room really took away from the performances,” said Keiffer.

The four HVAC units that were in the ceiling above the seating space were removed and a new unit was installed on the roof of the middle school next door to keep noise in the auditorium to a minimum. “It is going to be much quieter in here,” said Keiffer.

In order to further improve the acoustics of the space, all acoustic systems have been upgraded to provide an unparalleled audio experience for musical performances and public speaking events.

New features such as acoustic panels on the walls, a new sound system, new AV equipment, and sound-enhancing cloud panels on the ceiling have been added.

The auditorium was definitely worth the wait. Everyone is going to enjoy the time spent in there

— POPS Director Laura Harris

In addition to the technical improvements, the auditorium’s interior received a modern aesthetic makeover. The interior design radiates a contemporary and welcoming decor.

Tyrone High School POPS and chorus director Laura Harris is especially excited about the official reopening of the auditorium.

“The auditorium was definitely worth the wait. Everyone is going to enjoy the time spent in there,” Harris said.

The first choral concert in the new auditorium will be on Sunday, December 10 at 2 pm by the Middle and High School Concert Choirs.

The students and community have been eagerly awaiting the opportunity to experience the transformed auditorium.

“I’m excited to finally be able to use the auditorium again for performances. It will give everyone an opportunity to see our talents. The new sound system will also greatly enhance our productions,” said Hailey Lowery, a member of the TAHS POPS and concert choir.

Students and the public are welcome to attend the open house and concert on Thursday evening.

Click below to view a slideshow of the project at various points over the last 18 months:

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About the Contributor
Alyssa Houck, Staff Writer
Alyssa Houck is a sophomore this year and is in her first year as a member of the Eagle Eye News. She is involved in basketball, track and field, NHS, YAN, Golden Revolution, FFA, and Student Council. In her free time, she enjoys hanging out with family and friends, as well as working on her agricultural business of raising livestock. After high school, she plans to attend Penn State University to obtain a degree in business.

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