University of Southern Maine receives $10M to help fund new music building on Portland campus

Posted on: September 23, 2021

“A $10 million donation from philanthropist D. Suzi Osher, the largest-ever monetary gift to the University of Southern Maine, moves forward the long-held dream of a first-class home for the USM School of Music on its Portland campus,” writes Bob Keyes in Tuesday’s (9/21) Press Herald (Portland, ME). “The Osher gift, announced at a media briefing Tuesday, follows a $5 million gift in June from the Crewe Foundation. Ainsley Wallace, USM Foundation president [estimated] the total cost of the building … at between $38 million and $42 million…. USM President Glenn Cummings said, ‘we are probably a few million dollars short of where we want to be, but we are very close.’ … ‘The earliest we anticipate breaking ground for construction would be 2023,’ … Wallace said…. As envisioned, the single-story building will have a performance hall with about 200 seats, flexible classroom and rehearsal spaces, sound-proof studios, as well as a visual arts gallery and the Kate Cheney Chappell Center for Book Arts. Corthell Hall on the Gorham campus, the longtime home for the school of music, will continue to be used for first- and second-year music students, and USM is exploring other uses.”