MBLA’s latest building for RNCM fulfils a variety of roles for the college – to a very high acoustic specification. Accommodation includes two double-height orchestral rehearsal studios; 17 practice rooms for groups of up to four players; the senior management administration suite; general teaching rooms; and a headquarters for the Manchester Camerata Chamber Orchestra.
The studios include acoustically diffusing ceilings, walls which provide both high levels of sound insulation and areas of fixed acoustic absorption, and motorised sound absorption that allow reverberation to be controlled. The wing is situated on one of the city’s busiest arterial routes: at ground floor an acoustic buffer against traffic noise doubles-up as a literal ‘shop window’ for RNCM to promote its activities as an international conservatoire and as a successful arts centre.
The project was delivered to a high specification and within a budget normally associated with generic teaching buildings.