Princeton Gets $10 Million Donation from Mystery Donor for New Music Building

REUTERS /EDUARDO MUNOZ /LANDOV
People walk around the Princeton University campus in New Jersey, November 16, 2013.

We're fairly confident it wasn't Donald Rumsfeld or Queen Noor.

A wealthy, and anonymous-for-now, Princeton alumnus and his wife have donated $10 million for a new music building in the Ivy League school's arts complex. When completed the three-story building will add 23,000 square feet of space for music students and contain a performance/rehearsal space with 30-foot ceilings and adjustable acoustics, plus teaching rooms and a digital recording studio.

According to Princeton's announcement, the music building was designed by architect Steven Holl and will serve as the home of arts facilities for the Department of Music and the overall Lewis Center for the Arts. It is slated for completion in 2017.

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"Attending Princeton was a formative experience," said the alumnus, who gets to name the building but wishes to remain anonymous for now. "It was there that I developed a deep and lasting interest in the arts. When my wife and I visited campus and witnessed the engagement, curiosity and passion of so many students in so many areas of arts study, the decision to be a part of the team in promoting the arts at Princeton was an easy one."

So, who's the donor intent on keeping it hush-hush until closer to the building's completion? It may come as a surprise but Princeton has pretty strong track record in producing famous -- and often rich -- graduates. That said, we're gonna go out on a limb and say the donor probably wasn't former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Queen Noor of Jordan, disgraced ex-NY governor Eliot Spitzer, consumer advocate Ralph Nader, First Lady Michelle Obama or General David H. Petraeus.

More likely candidates -- if you had to pick someone famous -- include former Google's executive chairman Eric Schmidt, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos or maybe even publisher/flat tax guy Steve Forbes.

Here's a video with renderings of the new building: