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TTU News

When the rehearsal hall in Tennessee Tech University’s Bryan Fine Arts Building reopens next month, it will have a new look and a new name.

That’s because it’s under renovation, with funds provided entirely through gifts from the family and friends of the late Col. Maurice Haste, who was credited with starting a music degree program at TTU.

A dedication ceremony for the newly updated Maurice Haste Rehearsal Hall is set for 11 a.m. in Room 101 of the Bryan Fine Arts Building on Saturday, Oct. 1, with a reception to follow in the building’s lobby.

The Troubadours, TTU’s jazz ensemble originally formed by Col. Haste, will be the reception’s featured musicians.

Once renovations of the rehearsal hall are complete, the room will include state-of-the-art teaching technology, new rehearsal equipment to enhance music classes and new musical instruments for TTU’s ensemble programs.

“Maurice Haste is remembered for all he did for students, the music program and the university, and the Haste Rehearsal Hall is dedicated in his memory,” said Jonathan Good, chairperson of TTU’s music and art department.

Haste came to TTU to start a music degree program in 1939, when the campus was still known as Tennessee Polytechnic Institute. His efforts were interrupted when he had to leave Cookeville for two years during World War II, but he returned to campus afterward to continue pursuing his goal, with the first music graduates completing their degrees in 1951.

“In addition, Haste initiated many programs still thriving at TTU today,” Good said. “He founded the Troubadours, of course, in 1948, and he was TTU’s first director of bands, which laid the groundwork for the university’s successful band program today.”

He was also instrumental in guiding the development of public school music programs in many areas of Tennessee and was elected the first president of the Tennessee Music Educators Association in 1945.

The dedication ceremony for the Haste Rehearsal Hall is open to the public.

For more information, call TTU’s music and art department at 931/372-3161.