The Helen K. Persson Recital Hall is the gem of the building. You immediately see its beauty and warmth; however, what is not seen is what is most impressive; the acoustical magic built into the space. The acoustics are much like those of the very best Italian opera houses.
The rehearsal halls are spacious and acoustically flexible, according to the needs of whatever group is using them; technologically, they also are tied into the control room of the recital hall for ease of recording projects. The Instrumental Rehearsal Hall on the first floor is large enough for full symphony orchestra rehearsals as well as symphonic band rehearsals. Opening to the east of the rehearsal hall is the Percussion Studio.
The second story of the building allows space for the upper area of the Instrumental Rehearsal Hall and the Recital Hall. The remaining space houses graphic arts laboratories and a dance studio.
The third floor houses the spacious choral rehearsal hall, built large enough to rehearse a large oratorio chorus and chamber orchestra together; its upper expanse is two stories high. The rest of the third floor houses classrooms, practice rooms, lockers, a few faculty studios, an ensemble rehearsal room and a student lounge. The faculty studios and practice rooms are soundproof, and are equipped with excellent pianos and equipment.
The classrooms, composition labs and keyboard/computer lab are designed with the highest in technological advances for students' needs. Many of the pianos in the studios and practice rooms are equipped with technological advances that allow them to perform as regular concert grand pianos, while also adding instant record and playback features. Students can play their piano lesson and record not only the sounds but also the action of the piano.
Stepping off the elevator on the fourth floor provides a magnificent view of the Intracoastal Waterway, and you can look straight down Worth Avenue to the Atlantic Ocean. The fourth floor houses many faculty studios, the keyboard/computer laboratory, a few practice rooms with "smart music" hookups, three composition labs, a conference room and another dance studio.
Vera Lea Rinker Hall is named for the mother of John Rinker and the wife of founding PBA trustee, "Doc" Marshall E. Rinker. John and Sheila Rinker have set up an endowment of well over $2 million dollars that provides funding for a large part of the building and programs in the School of Music and Fine Arts.