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Krannert Fine Arts Center

Fine Arts at Anderson Universtiy

Founded by Ruthven Byrum in 1936, Anderson University’s art department had first been housed in Old Main. It was moved to Kemp Music Hall, Government Hall, Park Place Elementary School, and Anderson College Music Hall until Krannert Fine Arts Center became its first permanent home in 1979. There were 175 students in the music and art programs at the time of its opening.

Dedicated on April 26, 1979, Krannert Fine Arts Center became the home of the music and arts departments. It consists of multiple buildings housing classrooms, offices, practice rooms, studios, and galleries. The northernmost unit is the Bill and Gloria Gaither Music Building, which contains the Majorie Austen Performance Hall, the Ruth Heaton Performance Hall, and the Orangehaus recording studio, which opened in 2002. The middle building is the Wilbur and Eileen Schield Music Building.  The Marvin L. Forbes Building stands south of Krannert Plaza and houses the department of communication and design arts, as well as the School of Physical Sciences & Engineering. Additionally, the center contains the Jessie C. Wilson East and West Galleries. The 70,000 square feet of space is well used by many students, faculty, and staff each day.

The center was named for Ellnora Decker Krannert of the Krannert Foundation and Krannert Charitable Trust, which provided the founding $1 million gift for the arts center in March of 1976. At the time, this was the largest single gift for Anderson College and nearly a third of the total cost of the building. The remaining 2.6 million was raised as a part of Anderson College’s Phoenix Challenge. 

References

  • Callen, Barry L. Guide of Soul and Mind: The Story of Anderson University. Anderson: Warner Press, 1992. Print.
  • "Campus Buildings" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archives
  • "General Buildings" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archives
  • "Krannert Fine Arts Building" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archives