Resource of the Month

*** Beginning in Summer 2011, the we are featuring resources on our blog, Notes from the Music and Performing Arts Library or our Twitter account. Older resources can be found below. Please note that some links may no longer work.


Histories of Music Exhibit The scholarly study of music history is a surprisingly recent innovation, one that is explored in Histories of Music, a new exhibit at Yale's Gilmore Music Library. It features general histories of music from Printz in the 17th century through Hawkins and Burney in the 18th to Kiesewetter, Fétis, and Ambros in the 19th. The exhibit also includes Glarean's Dodekachordon of 1547, and Donald Jay Grout's A History of Western Music.

The National Jukebox for historical sound recordings.Newly launched by the Library of Congress with Sony Music Content.

MPAL Research Guides can save you time and get you started on the right track.
Music Guides | Dance Guides | Theatre Guides



New edition of the theatre resource Black Drama now available.

Costume Historical Image Collections in the Institute of Museum and Library Services Digital Collections and Content

Emerging Composers Library: The ECL is a free digital library that holds unpublished scores (PDF's), MP3 recordings and events/call for scores from emerging composers world wide.

Samuel Barber at the Library of Congress

We now subscribe to the online audio streaming tool Jazz Music Library (we had a trial this summer).


January: New interface for Classical Music Library audio tool

February: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music is now available online as a trial via Oxford Music Online. Please let us know what you think!

March: Digital Collection of East African Recordings The Global Music Archive is a multi-media archive and resource center for traditional and popular song, music, and dance of Africa and North and South America, with particular emphasis on the African Diaspora. Search the collection.

April and May:

Theater in Video now available to the UIUC community. 

Jazz Music Library trial now available to UIUC community.

Summer: Orchestra Musicians' CDROM Library and CDSheetMusic content now available online via Library Music Source

Fall: Archival Sound Recordings from the British Library


January: Schubert Online Contains digital reproductions of more than 500 score autographs, letters and life documents by Franz Schubert.

February: The Pianola Institutewas launched in 1985 to breathe new life into player pianos around the world, and to lure them back into the mainstream of music by means of recordings, exhibitions, publications and archive and study facilities.

March: Britten-Pears Library and Archive The Britten–Pears Library was originally assembled by Benjamin Britten (1913–1976) and Peter Pears (1910–1986), as a working library built on their personal collections of books manuscripts, printed scores and sound recordings. Information about their holdings and a searchbale catalog are available here .

April: Listen to Historic Pianists
Publically accessible pages on the International Piano Archive at Maryland website that present short biographies of historically important pianists as well as audio examples of their artistry.

May: The Music of Gustav Mahler: A Catalogue of Manuscripts and Printed Editions This catalogue lists all surviving manuscript sources and presents full bibliographic descriptions of the early printed sources: all those that appeared during the composer's lifetime, and first or other important editions that appeared after his death. This information is accompanied by lists of performances during Mahler's lifetime, brief details of historically significant recordings and supplementary essays.

June : Internet Broadway Database archive is the official database for Broadway theatre information. IBDB provides records of productions from the beginnings of New York theatre until today. Details include pertinent people involved as well as interesting facts and production statistics.

July: New Grove Music interface, now known as Oxford Music Online.

October: Play Index covers over 30,000 plays written from Antiquity to the present and published from 1949 to the present, written in or translated into English, including mysteries, pageants, plays in verse, puppet performances, radio and television plays, and classic drama. Search for plays by title; author; subject (sisters, culture conflict, marriage); style (symbolism, experimental theater); genre (comedy, melodrama, musical); cast type; and more. Play Index provides the full publication details needed to locate the play in its published manifestations.

November: Historic presidential campaign songs from the Library of Congress's Performing Arts Encyclopedia. Spanning from 1868 to 1920, the songs make reference to Ulyesses S. Grant, Grover Cleveland, and Woodrow Wilson, as well as those who lost the elections, such as William Jennings Bryan and Horace Greely. Also mentioned are third parties such as the Greenback Party, the Labor Party and the Bull Moose Party.

December: Dance collections at Chicago's Newberry Library: The Newberry has dozens of archival collections related to dance that are available to researchers. Collections range from the Jan Erkert and Dancers records (1976-2000), the Hubbard Street Dance Company records (1970-ongoing), the MoMing Dance and Arts Center records (1970-1991, and the Rodgers square dance research collection (ca. 1943-1993), among others. Collections contain correspondence, papers, recordings, programs, choreography, and more.


January: Music Educators' National Conference resource page for music education, at This resource gives access to the pages of the National Association for Music Education, and is an excellent "way in" to music education resources. In addition to the national address above, there is a local UIUC page, at

Feb/March: Worldwide Internet Music Resources. This "gateway" to music resources is run from Indiana University Music Library. It is probably the largest "mega-metasite" of its type, with hundreds of links to Internet music sites. URL is

April : I nternational Bibliography of Theater and Dance with Full Text, at This significant new dance resource is likely to open up many useful research areas for dance and theater scholars.

May: Classical Scores Library, from Alexander Street Press. UIUC had this database on trial from May 1 until June 14 2007. At the time of writing (June 1 2007), no decision has been taken concerning whether the Music Library will subscribe.

June/July: The Neue Mozart Ausgabe [Mozart complete works edition] online. At

August: Google Book Search. UIUC libraries have recently signed a deal to contribute material to this site, which contains electronic versions of printed books. In many cases you can see the full text of the complete book, while other books may be limited to sample pages only. Click here for information about Google Book Search; here for information on UIUC's contribution to it; and here for more information on digital library projects at UIUC.

September: Hofmeister XIX Music Catalogs . "Hofmeister XIX" is an on-line, searchable version of the Hofmeister Monatsberichte for the years 1829-1900. Containing some 400,000 records of music publications, it is the most extensive resource for establishing what was published where and when during that period. Indispensable for those working on 19th century topics.

October: New UIUC Library Gateway The library's "gateway" home page to information resources has been upgraded and updated, enabling you to search our catalogs, digitised books and journals, and even the Web all at the same time. There is also a lot of helpful information about individual libraries, plus a link to latest library news.

November: Ethnographic Thesaurus November is American Music Month. The American Folklore Society has developed, with the American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress the Ethnographic Thesaurus. The Thesaurus is a searchable online vocabulary that can be used to improve access to information about folklore, ethnomusicology, cultural anthropology, and related fields.

December: The Centre National de la Danse (Paris) is a public institution created in November 1998 by the Ministry of Culture. It is a unique institution of its kind in France and in the world entirely dedicated to dance. The CND strives to play an active role in the rich and diverse choreographic activities of its varied professions, from creation and distribution to education.



January: The Hymn Tune Index . This project is based at UIUC under the supervision of Professor Nicholas Temperley. It consists of indexes to printed hymn tunes from before 1820, and also resulted in a 4-volume set of books from Oxford University Press, published in 1998.

February: The American Memory Project at the Library of Congress. Much music material is included.

March: The Music Necrology site at the University of Washington, St Louis. This amazing site indexes obituaries of musicians. Home page is at

April: African-American Song. The first online resource to document the history of African American music in an online music listening service. The collection contains a diverse range of genres such as jazz, blues, gospel, ragtime, folk songs, and narratives, among others. Click here to access.

May -August: JSTOR. No apologies for featuring this several times, as it's such a useful database of periodical articles. Main drawback is that it usually does not cover periodicals beyond about the year 2000. You need you click on the "ejournals" link on the Music Library's homepage for that.

September: The Sheet Music Consortium. Based at UCLA, this website allows you to search the content of several digital sheet music projects, and gives useful links to others. Click here to access.

October: online newspaper resources, available via the "Online Research Resources" bar from the Music Library's home page. Want today's newspapers? Use the "Press Display" service, available via the History, Philosophy and Newspaper Library's home page, and at

November-December: Smithsonian Global Sound. For information, see "November 2005" below. 



June-September: Classical Music Library : a database that provides access to tracks from CDs from many record companies. Several full-length operas are included, as well as songs, chamber music, etc. 

November: Smithsonian Global Sound . Here’s the “blurb” from the website: “Smithsonian Global Sound, produced in partnership with Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, is a virtual encyclopedia of the world's musical and aural traditions. The collection provides educators, students, and interested listeners with an unprecedented variety of online resources that support the creation, continuity, and preservation of diverse musical forms. It includes the published recordings owned by the non-profit Smithsonian Folkways Recordings label and the archival audio collections of the legendary Folkways Records, Cook, Dyer-Bennet, Fast Folk, Monitor, Paredon and other labels. It also includes music recorded around the African continent by Dr. Hugh Tracey for the International Library of African Music (ILAM) at Rhodes University as well as material collected by recordists on the South Asian subcontinent from the Archive Research Centre for Ethnomusicology (ARCE), sponsored by the American Institute for Indian Studies.”

: ARTSTOR. ARTSTOR is an archive of pictorial images (paintings, photographs, etc.) assembled from many galleries and archives around the world. It includes some musical images, including a new archive of sheet music pages. Click here for an introduction to ARTSTOR, and here to access the site itself. At present you have to register to use the site. This is a simple process (honestly!): just follow the links on the ARTSTOR home page.