Keokuk High School to build new music wing

Published: Mar. 3, 2022 at 6:29 PM CST
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KEOKUK, Iowa. (WGEM) - Keokuk High School is making major upgrades to their music department with an expansion to their current building.

Principal Adam Magliari said it will feature multiple practice rooms and full ensemble rooms to fit all students at once.

There are about 75 band students, and right now they can’t all fit in the band room with all of their instruments so they have to practice at different times.

Magliari said the new space will feature multiple practice rooms, and full ensemble rooms to fit all students at once

He said the high school takes pride in its performing arts programs, which is why the expansion is so important.

“We have a long lasting tradition of fine arts and competing across the state. Many many trophies and many awards have come out of our program here, and so it’s been a long time coming to have that area where they can practice,” Magliari said.

Magliari said this project has been in the works for three years, but construction crews started leveling out the ground Thursday. They expect to complete the project by this November.

Keokuk High School marching band and choir students have used small practice spaces for over 30 years.

“Thirty years, that’s a long time I can’t imagine being in this small of a space for our whole music program for that long,” Potratz said.

William Potratz plays trombone in the band, and he said he’s looking forward to the new music department expansion.

“When I came to the high school, it was definitely a change with the small space we had so I’m really excited for this addition,” Potratz said.

Vocal Director Jason Woodley said the extra space would benefit his choir students.

“Instead of actually having choir in the cafeteria that we have been doing for several years, this will allow us to be in one space and continue to grow,” Woodley said.

Band Director Jesse Deese said that will greatly benefit his students’ education.

“We are practice rooms that are not gonna serve three or four functions like they do now. They are gonna be dedicated practice rooms for those kids,” Deese said.

Magliari said the expansion will cost about $4 million. Money for the project came from the Iowa SAVE Fund, which is revenue from the state sales tax to use for school infrastructure.

They will be having a groundbreaking ceremony at 4 p.m. Wednesday.

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