All of these collections were processed by Amanda Brent and are available for use in the Special Collections Research Center.
Two black and white photographs of Harry Partch playing his Cloud-Chamber Bowls instrument, taken March 10 and 11, 1962. Both photographs are inscribed on the back with the phrase “Harry Partch plays one of his invented instruments – Cloud Chamber Bowls”…The photographs appear to have been first taken and owned by “Daily News” which is most likely the New York Daily News…Harry Partch was an American composer, music theorist, and inventor of musical instruments. Born in 1901 in Oakland, California, Partch held a lifelong interest in music and musical composition. Partch found most of his creative success later in life when he held a residency at the University of Illinois from 1956 – 1962. It was there that he created many of the musical instruments he is known for. Partch’s compositions exclusively used the instruments he created, including his Cloud-Chamber Bowls.
Content warning: Racist imagery depicting minstrelsy and blackface.
Black and white photograph of Norine Carman’s Minstrels, a minstrel show, taken circa 1916 by C.F. Gairing & Co., Chicago photography studio. The photograph depicts six men seated on a stage wearing blackface, with the leader, a white woman (presumably Norine Carman) standing on a pedestal in the center. The photograph is inscribed and reads “With Best Wishes to – The Orchestra Boy – from Norine Carman Minstrels[.]” The photograph was used to advertise the show in various newspapers across America. On the verso is another inscription that reads “Norine Carman Minstrels”…The minstrel show, or minstrelsy, was a racist form of entertainment that was most popular from 1850 through 1870, but continued in the vaudeville world through the early 20th century. Blackface minstrelsy consisted of white performers in blackface depicting racist caricatures of African Americans, usually enslaved persons. Minstrel shows evolved and eventually all-Black troupes performed and were just as popular as blackface minstrelsy. By the late 1910s, minstrel shows had declined in popularity, but minstrelsy’s influence on American culture reverberated for many years to come, with blackface being used in entertainment for decades thereafter.
Black and white press photograph of composers and music educators, from left to right, Norman Dello Joio, Dmitry Kabalevsky, and Zoltan Kodaly at the seventh International Society for Music Education conference at Interlochen, taken August 24, 1966 by Wayne Brill…The Interlochen Center for the Arts, originally known as the National Music Camp, was established in 1928 by Joseph Maddy and Thaddeus P. Giddings in Interlochen, Michigan. The camp grew in size and reputation over time, becoming an internationally renowned center for music and the arts. In 1966, Interlochen hosted the International Society for Music Education conference, the first time it was hosted in the western hemisphere. Interlochen Center for the Arts remains a respected and popular player in the international classical music and performing arts scene.
Black and white photograph of John Cage, Gordon Mumma, and David Tudor at a concert rehearsal, taken July 5, 1968. The picture features, from left to right, Mumma, Cage, and Tudor sitting and standing behind electronic music equipment as they adjust parts of the equipment with their hands. On the verso is a news clipping which gives the date and reads: “Concert Rehearsal – Electronic Style[.] John Cage, center, famed electronic composer, prepares for a concert at the University of Colorado Music Hall. With him are Gordon Mumma, left, whose piece “Home” was to be performed, and David Tudor, busy with the intricate connections demanded by the maze of electronic equipment for production.” John Cage, Gordon Mumma, and David Tudor were frequent collaborators, and were particularly known for their time in the late 1960s – early 1970s as composer-musicians with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company in New York.
An illustrated scroll – or emakimono – of samples of masks and a record of props used in Noh theater. The scroll measures nearly 30 feet in length when unrolled and is constructed of individual illustrated leaves that have been adhered together to create the scroll. When rolled, the scroll is housed in a wooden box. The scroll features illustrations of masks and props from traditional Japanese Noh theatre, including masks of characters from a variety of plays, such as Yama-uba, Hannya, Atsumori, Shunkan, and Ikkaku Sennin. The scroll was likely used as a visual catalogue of items by a collector of Noh masks and props. It is possible this scroll is a copy of an original scroll, based off of the title’s translation…Noh theatre is a traditional Japanese style of theatre created in the 14th century, and is the oldest continuously performed theatrical tradition in the world. Noh plays, which combine drama, music, and dance, are very structured with specific characters, emotions, words, and costumes. In Noh there are always designated roles (played by men), which in turn determine the masks worn. These masks inform the audience which character is which. Traditionally, Noh masks are carved from Japanese cypress. There are more than 200 Noh masks in use today.
“Trapped in a System” pamphlet by activist and Students for a Democratic Society president, Carl Oglesby, dated November 27, 1965. The pamphlet covers Oglesby’s views on how American Liberalism created the “system” that led to the Vietnam War. On the back of the pamphlet is information on Students for a Democratic Society…Carl Oglesby was an American antiwar activist, particularly involved in anti-Vietnam War rhetoric and demonstration. Oglesby became the president for Students for a Democratic Society in 1965, serving through 1966. He was eventually expelled from the group. Oglesby was involved in politics, writing, and education for most of his life…Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) was founded in 1959 as a branch of the League for Industrial Democracy. The SDS grew in popularity in the 1960s and was mostly known for its anti-Vietnam War stance, staging a national march in Washington, D.C. in 1965. By 1969 the SDS had split into numerous factions, and by the 1970s was no longer active.
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