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Campus & Community

This new home provides pitch-perfect spaces

The innovative Timashev Family Music Building makes it possible for students and faculty to reach new heights.

A young black man wearing glasses and a patterned sweater shows a fellow student a tablet computer with sheet music that he's made notations on. They're both engrossed by it.

Jonathan Mitchell, right, and Wyatt Kerns work together on a class project as they and friends study on the first floor of the bright, new Timashev Family Music Building. (Photo by Jodi Miller)

Supporting software innovation, too

Ratmir and Angela Timashev, through the Timashev Family Foundation, also have made a historic, $110 million gift to Ohio State to establish the Center for Software Innovation. There, cutting-edge education, scholarships and internships will be offered to students, and an incubator will boost entrepreneurs.

The 96,000-square-foot structure bolsters the university’s growing arts district, a gateway to campus at 15th Avenue and High Street. The area’s creative energy is palpable, with momentum that includes a new Theatre, Film and Media Arts Department building set to open this year.

With a few short steps, artists across disciplines can meet up to exchange ideas and create.

“I’m looking forward to the possibilities for all of those collaborations and how easy it will be to make that happen,” says Mike Smith, an assistant professor of practice in jazz studies. 

The new building’s features have inspired Smith and his fellow faculty to rethink music and to hear it in different ways.

“It lends itself to collegiality,” he says of the new environment. “I can see my colleagues in jazz studies in other areas, walking down the hall, and we can chat and exchange ideas in ways that weren’t nearly as easy in Hughes Hall.”

Four people lead more inside a building with shiny floors and a wall of windows. The four are all smiling: The dad has an arm slung around his son's shoulders, and the boy is carrying the drum major's baton. The fourth person is the boy's mom. She's wearing scarlet heels and a proud expression as she watches.
At the dedication in October, the marching band’s head drum major, Austin Bowman, accompanied Ratmir Timashev and his family. At right is his wife, Angela, and at left is their youngest son, Philipp. (Photo by Logan Wallace)

The five-floor Timashev building is equipped with some of the most acoustically and technologically advanced performance and practice spaces in the nation. One of those innovations is the “box-in-a box” design that leaves gaps between each room and surrounding walls, floors and ceilings to contain sound in intended spaces. Like the instruments played within it, every detail is carefully crafted and calibrated to maximize acoustic potential.

The Timashev building also is seamlessly connected to Weigel Auditorium, a 700-seat venue that accommodates large ensemble performances and rehearsals. Along with recording studios, keyboard labs and large classrooms, a new 240-seat recital hall is among the building’s key attractions.

“The recital hall is aesthetically pleasing. It’s a very warm and intimate space,” Mitchell says. “You feel like you’re performing for a group of people who love you and support you.”

Seen from behind, five musicians play stringed instruments in a recital hall with mostly empty seats. The ceiling is very high, windows let in natural light and the acoustic treatment of the walls looks like modern art.

String ensemble members demonstrate for a small gathering the vibrancy of their collaboration in the 195-seat recital hall. (Photo by Jodi Miller)

From rehearsals and classes to performances and private lessons, every occasion has a home in the new building, which Smith says is buzzing with excitement and innovation. “I’m inspired to do different things here,” he says, “and quite a lot of it because of the new space we’re in.” 

Smith says he hopes the entire Ohio State community will take advantage of the rich offerings of the School of Music, which is exactly what Ratmir and Angela Timashev have in mind.

“I hope this building sends a message about how much Ohio State values art and music,” Ratmir says. “Whether they’re music majors or nonmajors, I hope students feel they have the best opportunity to do what they love, right here at the center of campus.”

Students walk down a hallway where the late-afternoon sun streaming in through the wall of windows casts shadows on the floor.

This 3-minute video, created by third-year students Molly Goheen and Fermin Lopez for Lantern TV, offers a tour of the Timashev Family Music Building.

Indeed, many faculty and students are doing what they love thanks to Ratmir and Angela Timashev’s generosity. Most of the couple’s $17 million gift to the College of Arts and Sciences went toward the new music building. Donated in 2020, it was then the largest gift ever to the college.

In 2016, Timashev — through Veeam, the company he was leading at the time — contributed $5 million to the college to support student scholarships, teaching and research in chemical physics and data analytics.

“I will always be grateful for the opportunity Ohio State gave me as a graduate student, which defined my career and life,” Ratmir said at the time. “It is my privilege and honor to support Ohio State and its students, who all were given that same great opportunity to become Buckeyes.”

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