You all know how much we here at the music library love archives, and rightly so! They are a great way to delve into the past, and to witness the evolution of your research topic throughout history.
Speaking of archives, an enormous archive has just been finished, that of the New York Philharmonic. That’s right, they’ve finished the massive undertaking of archiving every single performance program published since their founding year of 1842. So now you can go back through 173 years (count ’em!) of NY Phil concert programs, 13,300 in total.
Their site notes that among these programs are such historically significant ones as “those from the 1865 memorial concert for Abraham Lincoln; the 1893 World Premiere of Dvorák’s Symphony No. 9, From the New World; the 1928 World Premiere of Gershwin’s An American in Paris, with program notes by the composer; the concert that took place on December 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor Day; for the free downtown chamber concerts given after 9/11 for those working near the ruins of the World Trade Center; and from the Philharmonic’s national and international tours, including Toscanini’s 1930 European Tour and the 2008 tour to Pyongyang, D.P.R.K., led by then Music Director Lorin Maazel.” Not quite actual audio recordings, but we’ll take it!
They also make sure to mention that these archives are free and accessible online to all researchers. I have a feeling this will be of major use to many music students at AU and worldwide. And even if you’re not researching for any specific purpose, it has to be exciting to walk down American classical music’s memory lane and hear the language of these classic documents. Check them out here!