Bringing Music to Life

For Josh Gruss ’96, the dream of giving back to his alma mater reached a high note with the opening of Trinity College’s Gruss Music Center on May 19.

The facility features a Music Hall with acoustical treatments to accommodate the teaching, rehearsal, and performance of all genres of music. Its electronic music lab, underwritten by an anonymous donor, more than doubles the technology and seating of the previous space. The center also boasts a state-of-the-art recording room and four practice rooms, each with recording capabilities.

At the event, Cornie Parsons Thornburgh ’80, chair of Trinity’s Board of Trustees, thanked Gruss for his support of the project. She also recognized leadership donors Palmer Sloan Harckham ’82 and Finley Harckham P’10, ’15, ’16, and Richard Field ’63, who gifted the front entrance and a practice room, respectively. “We are here to celebrate a renewed dedication to music education at Trinity, made possible by the leadership and philanthropy of many in attendance,” Thornburgh said. She also recognized Eric Galm, associate professor of music and chair of the Music Department, for “his vision of music education.”

In her remarks, Trinity President Joanne Berger-Sweeney noted that the new center further establishes the performing arts as an important component of a liberal arts education and that Gruss’s gift helps to ensure that it will be a mainstay of a Trinity education for future musicians, writers, and performers.

Said Gruss, “This is a momentous day for the Music Department and all the musicians on campus who now have a wonderful place to call their home. Music is the lifeblood of many new experiences. … It’s universal and connects people around the world, and I’m sure that the center will connect everyone on campus.”

Gruss started playing guitar at a young age and aspired to have a career in music. He graduated from Trinity with a B.A. in French and Italian and earned an executive M.B.A. from Columbia University and the London Business School. He also attended Berklee College of Music and serves on its Board of Trustees. Gruss, a former member of Trinity’s Board of Trustees and Board of Fellows, is CEO and chairman of Round Hill Music, a full-service music publishing and rights-management company whose catalog includes songs by Frank Sinatra, the Rolling Stones, and The Beatles.

View the slideshow from the event below.

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