Rachel Ellis, DN
Pruis Hall: Inside the limestone piano
Editor's note: In honor of the university's centennial year, The Daily News is counting down 100 days to the university's celebration Sept. 6 with 100 of Ball State's most famous traditions and figures. Check back each day to read about Cardinal history.
Since October 1972, Pruis Hall has hosted numerous classes, artists and events including performances from singer Mandy Harvey, comedian W. Kamau Bell and the Muncie Symphony Orchestra.
The two-story building was designed out of Indiana limestone and cement to look like a grand piano and was originally named University Hall.
On Oct. 13, 1973, however, the building was dedicated to Ball State’s seventh president John J. Pruis, who was president while Pruis Hall and many other campus buildings were built.
The auditorium, which is located between Emens Auditorium and Bracken Library, seats 668 people. It is used by students and community members throughout each year for activities like Friday Night Filmworks, homecoming festivities and the Frog Baby Film Festival.
Additionally, various large lectures, conferences, clinics and workshops are held inside Pruis due to its large amount of seating.
Pruis Hall also was used to film the pilot episode of the reality music competition “The Song” in March 2016.
The show featured 15 competitors, performances from three artists including Daya and a panel of celebrity judges which included former Hootie and the Blowfish member Darius Rucker and former senior vice president of promotion at Sony Music Skip Bishop.
Competitors were required to perform original songs, which the judges used to determine who would be selected to take part in “The Workshop.” The artists then had 48 hours to fine-tune their work before performing it in front of a live audience.