Belmont University has received a $58 million lead gift from music industry veteran Mike Curb and the Mike Curb Foundation to propel the expansion of its Mike Curb College of Entertainment & Music Business on Music Row. The news and renderings were disclosed last night (April 9) to an industry crowd at a reception prior to the “Belmont at the Opry” event, which commemorated the music business program’s 50th anniversary.

The gift marks largest in the school’s history, and will support renovation of existing buildings as well as construction of a new state-of-the-art facility, aiming to preserve the area’s history while providing innovative spaces for entertainment industry education and collaboration.

“Mike Curb’s remarkable generosity and partnership with Belmont over many years has been invaluable in advancing entertainment and music business education,” noted Dr. Greg Jones, President of Belmont University. “This latest transformational gift solidifies Belmont’s position at the forefront of developing the next generation of music industry leaders. We are profoundly grateful to Mike and Linda [Curb] for their continued investment in Belmont’s mission.”

“As Nashville’s music industry has grown and evolved into an international entertainment hub, it’s crucial that our education system keeps pace to develop skilled talent,” said Curb. “Belmont has been a fantastic partner over the years in preparing aspiring artists, songwriters, engineers and music business leaders who go on to become invaluable employees for record companies throughout Nashville and the industry at large. With this latest investment, we’ll build upon that strong foundation to push entertainment and music business education ahead to the next level, ensuring a steady stream of well-prepared professionals for the ever-growing industry.”

The project is set to unfold in two phases. Already underway, phase one includes renovating the historic Buddy Lee Attractions/Capitol Records building, adding 17,000 square feet of songwriting rooms, listening spaces, live sound classrooms and student lounges. The renovation will also consist of new, updated space for Nashville’s Leadership Music offices, continuing Belmont and Curb College’s partnership with the organization.

Phase two will develop a new 75,000-square-foot building behind Belmont’s existing Music Row footprint. Construction on this facility will begin over the next two years and integrate all facets of the entertainment industry, including a performance venue anticipated to accommodate over 150 people, networking and gathering spaces for students and industry professionals, a coffee shop, content capture rooms and underground parking. This phase also involves a broader fundraising campaign for the building, which the school kicked off last night.

“For 50 years, our faculty, staff and world-class facilities have made Belmont a top destination for future music executives, engineers, artists and songwriters. Mike’s partnership over decades has allowed Belmont to continually elevate our entertainment curriculum and facilities in lockstep with industry needs,” said Brittany Schaffer, Dean of Curb College. “This lead gift allows us to deepen our integration with Music Row, creating an unprecedented immersive experience that will directly connect our students with industry leaders and opportunities while driving innovation alongside our partners in Nashville’s entertainment landscape.”

Construction details and timelines will be announced as plans progress