Bitó Conservatory of Music

Bard College

Annandale-on-Hudson, NY, USA

Completed 2013

Scope: 16,000 SF New Construction

Design Architect: Deborah Berke Partners

Photo: © Chris Cooper


This 16,000 sf building supports Bard's highly regarded Musical Conservatory Education Program. The state-of-the-art performance hall seats an audience of 150. Wall grazing light enhances the warm wood panels which encase an acoustic fabric material while creating a bold and visually arresting backdrop for the performers.
To achieve optimal acoustic quality within the rehearsal spaces, the lighting strategy needed to be executed early in the design process. This undertaking allowed the architectural team to develop a customized floating ceiling system with a requirement to achieve minimum contact between the building elements. This same strategy was then applied to the various sized studios and classrooms throughout the space to accommodate the individual musicians or small ensembles.
At night spotlights, invisible to the building exterior, illuminates the glass colonnade connecting the existing and new conservatory, creating an impressive visual link with minimum light spillage in the rural campus environment.