State University of New York at Buffalo. Music Library
12 linear feet
(162 reel to reel tapes,
278 audio compact discs
The collection contains recordings of
93 of the approximately 173 concerts presented at the Evenings for New Music
concerts from 1964-1980. Approximately 464 works were recorded as well as some
spoken introductions to works by their respective composers. The original recordings
were made on reel-to-reel tapes. The contents were transferred to cassettes in the
1980s and then digitally reformatted in 2007 onto CDs (service and in-house masters)
and DVDs (preservation masters).
Original collection of reel to reel tapes processed by John Bewley, 2006; reformatted contents processed 2013.
Gift of State University of New York at Buffalo Music Dept.
The reel to reel tapes are currently housed in Music Library Storage (B-32). The preservation masters are located in the Music Library's Treasure Room.
The Evenings for New Music concert series was a product of the Center of the Creative
and Performing Arts, established to give young professional performers and composers
the opportunity to focus on the production of new music. Lukas Foss, Music Director
for the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra 1963-1971, approached Gordon Smith, director
of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery 1955-1973, to develop ideas for a Center of New
Music in Buffalo. In discussions with Allan Sapp, Director of the University at
Buffalo Music Department, and the Rockefeller Foundation, a proposal was submitted
to the Foundation for the development of the Center. Modeled after the
Evenings-on-the-Roof concert series in Los Angeles, the Center of the Creative and
Performing Arts was “founded on notions of providing performing ensembles, of making
definitive renditions of new and complicated music feasible, of bringing composers
and performers into the closest working relationships, of developing a corpus of
recordings and privately-held scores, of establishing a central locus for the study
of new techniques of composition notation and performance practice.” The proposal
was accepted and the Center of the Creative and Performing Arts began operation in
Directors of the Center of the Creative and Performing Arts included the founders, Lukas Foss and Allan Sapp, who acted as Co-Directors from 1964-68; Lejaren Hiller, Co-Director with Lukas Foss from 1968-74; Jan Williams, Co-Director with Renée Levine from 1974-76; Renée Levine, Center Coordinator from 1964-74 and Co-Director from 1974-78; and Morton Feldman, Music Director from 1976-1980. Performers and composers selected to be fellows at the Center were given the title of Creative Associate.
There were two main concert series produced by the Center of the Creative and Performing Arts: Evenings for New Music concerts and Creative Associate Recitals. Evenings for New Music concerts were performed in Buffalo and also performed, often with changes in programs, at various venues in New York City, including Carnegie Hall, Cooper Union, and the WBAI Radio Free Music Store, at other State University of New York campuses, and at venues in other states, including New Jersey, New Hampshire, Michigan, Indiana, Vermont, and Washington, D.C.
The collection contains recordings of approximately 464 works performed at 93 of the
Evenings for New Music concerts 1964-1980. This finding aid contains a description
of the recordings of concerts held by the Music Library. Not all concerts were
recorded so the inventory in this finding aid does not represent a complete
description of all the concerts presented in the series. A fuller listing can be
seen in the compiled of the concert programs.
There are more than 200 composers represented in the collection. They include most of the major composers of the first half of the twentieth century, including Cage, Boulez, Babbitt, Schoenberg, Berg, Webern, Stockhausen, Stravinsky, Copland, and Feldman. The composers were often present at the concerts and rehearsals of their works so many of the performances were conducted under the supervision of the composer. The list of composers who appeared as performers in the concerts is equally impressive, including Earle Brown, Bussotti, Cage, Crumb, Del Tredici, Foss, Hiller, Pousseur, Riley, Rzewski, Sahl, and Wuorinen. The performers included some of the most prominent specialists in contemporary music, including Eberhard Blum, Ursula Oppens, Paul Zukofsky, Julius Eastman, Jan Williams, David Tudor, Stuart Dempster, Robert Dick, and Joan La Barbara.
The collection is arranged in two series:
I. Service copy compact discs reformatted from reel to reel tapes
II. Reel to reel tapes not reformatted
No further accruals are expected to this collection.
Materials can be examined by qualified researchers in the Music Library during
hours of operation during which Music Librarians are present. In order to insure
access, researchers are advised to contact the Music Library in advance of
Copyright for the materials in the collection does not reside with the Music
Library. Additionally, performers' permissions were not acquired at the time of
the recordings. Therefore, patrons wishing to publish any item, or part of an
item from this collection for any purpose, are responsible for securing
[Specified item], Recordings of Evenings for New Music, 1964-1980, Music Library,
The State University of New York at Buffalo.
Description of compact discs provided for access with notes about the original tape sources and location of the preservation copy. The In-house master compact discs are numbered in the same sequence, 1-139. Note that in some cases reel to reel tapes were not available at the time reformatting was performed so the Music Library's cassette copies were used as source material instead.
Twelve tapes discovered and identified as containing Evenings for New Music content after the original reformatting project was completed. Some of the tapes contain concerts that were reformatted using the cassette copies that had been made for the Music Library. Other recordings are from WBAI concerts.