Music Library Collections

Larry Austin Collection

Larry Austin (1930-2018) was a member of the UNT College of Music faculty from 1978 until 1996, and served as director of the Center for Experimental Music and Intermedia (CEMI) from 1983 to 1991, and in 1995 and 1996. The Larry Austin Collection consists of 88 boxes of musical works by Larry Austin and includes his compositions, sound recordings, films and videos.

Paul Bonneau Collection

Dr. Paul G. Bonneau was an alumnus of UNT, receiving his BM, MM, and DMA degrees from the College of Music. Bonneau was active in the Dallas-Fort Worth area as an instructor, conductor, and composer, teaching at UNT as well as at Richland College in Dallas. He was the founding music director of the Chancel Orchestra of Trietsch Memorial United Methodist Church in Flower Mound, Texas, and music director of the Flower Mound Symphony Orchestra.

Leon Breeden Collection

Leon Breeden was the director of Jazz Studies at North Texas from 1959 until 1981. He continued the efforts of his predecessor, Gene Hall, and facilitated the rise of the One O’Clock Lab Band to national and international prominence in spite of intense opposition to jazz in higher education.

Willis Conover Collection

A 1997 gift of the Willis Conover Jazz Preservation Foundation, Inc., the collection consists of over 22,000 recordings of numerous formats, correspondence, memos, magazines, record catalogs, manuscripts, program notes, memorabilia, photographs, books, and other personal items. The materials are not only from his work at the VOA, but also from his early career at WTBO and WWDC, and his correspondence with sci-fi and horror writer H.P. Lovecraft during Conover’s teen years. As Conover remained an independent contractor with the VOA for his entire career, his collection also contains numerous side-projects for radio and television, including work for WCBS in New York.

Merrill Ellis Collection

Merrill Ellis (1916-1981), founder of the electronic music program at The University of North Texas, was born on December 9, 1916 in Cleburne, Texas, just south of Fort Worth. He began his studies at The University of Oklahoma in 1935, earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1939, and a Master of Music in 1941, and studied composition privately with Roy Harris, Spencer Norton and Charles Garland. His master’s thesis at OU was entitled An Evaluation of the Oklahoma Federal Music Project. He pursued further graduate studies at the University of Missouri from 1948 to 1951, and continued to study privately with Spencer Norton (1940-1941), Roy Harris (1950-1960) and Darius Milhaud (1957).

Duke Ellington Collections

The UNT Music Library has three major collections related to Duke Ellington: The Duke Ellington Manuscript Collection, The Rhodes Baker Collection, and the Dennis Askey Collection. The Duke Ellington Manuscript Collection consists of one box of music manuscripts and dye-line copies of music by Duke Ellington, Johnny Hodges, Cat Anderson, Lou Carter, and Paul Gonsalves, including a 1-page autograph music manuscript in Ellington’s hand of “Get It Over.” The Rhodes Baker Collection, named for a Houston-area attorney and Ellington fan, includes numerous unreleased performances by the Ellington orchestra, and rare records. The Dennis Askey Collection, named for a former U.S. Foreign Service Officer, includes rare films such as footage from the 1962 First International Jazz Festival in Washington, D.C., as well as films from his travels in China and Afghanistan.

Maynard Ferguson Collection

The Maynard Ferguson Collection at the UNT Music Library contains over 750 arrangements for Ferguson’s bands from the 1950s through the early 2000s, and includes the work of arrangers such as Willie Maiden, Don Rader, Slide Hampton, Denis DiBlasio, and Steve Wiest, among many others. The collection also includes copies of published arrangements, as well as Thai and Indian music that Ferguson collected. Access provided only by special arrangement with the Music Library.

Don and Barbara Gillis Collection

Composer, arranger, and music educator Don Gillis was a producer for NBC Radio during the Toscanini era. This collection, donated to the University of North Texas Music Library by Barbara Gillis after her husband’s death in 1978, includes a complete set of tapes from the radio series Toscanini: The Man Behind the Legend. It also includes manuscripts, other copies, and tapes of Gillis’s works, an unpublished autobiography, papers, pictures, and scrapbooks.

Merritt Johnson Collection

Merritt Johnson (1902-1978) was a pianist, organist, and composer on the faculty at Northern State College (now University) in Aberdeen, South Dakota, and was a student of Joseph Lhevinne and Darius Milhaud. His collection at UNT consists of five boxes of music compositions, with numerous materials in the UNT Digital Library.

Stan Kenton Collection

World renowned bandleader Stan Kenton bequeathed his entire orchestra library to the University of North Texas. The collection comprises more than 2,000 manuscripts representing the work of Kenton’s famous arrangers including Bill Holman, Pete Rugolo, Robert Graettinger, and Bill Russo. The Stan Kenton Collection is supplemented by a gift from Noel Wedder, Kenton’s publicist, of over six hundred photographs of Kenton and his orchestra and a collection of research materials related to Robert Graettinger, donated by his biographer Robert Morgan.

William P. Latham Collection

Composer William P. Latham served on the faculty of the University of North Texas College of Music from 1965 until his retirement in 1984, at which time he was appointed Professor Emeritus. Throughout his extensive career, he taught both theory and composition. The collection consists of dozens of boxes of Latham’s compositions, related materials, and papers; numerous items are also available in the general, circulating collection of the UNT Music Library.

Jean-Baptiste Lully Collection

This project was conceived in 1996 both as a multimedia thematic catalog of the UNT Music Library’s collection of early editions of operas and ballets by the French Baroque composer Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-1687), and as a nucleus for collecting information useful to anyone studying those works. A pilot version of the Lully Web Project has been on the web since 1997.

Bob McGrath Collection

Bob McGrath is a singer, composer, and actor best known for his role as Bob Johnson on Sesame Street from 1969 until 2016. Mr. McGrath donated a collection of 24 boxes of band and symphonic works to the UNT Music Library in 2017, and the collection is currently being processed for detailed description.

Julia Smith Collection

The collection consists of approximately 66 boxes of music books, scores, correspondence, memorabilia, manuscripts, photographs, and recordings relating to the career of composer and University of North Texas alumna, Julia Smith (1905-1989). Best known for her six operas and biography of Aaron Copland (1955), Smith spent over fifty years as a composer, pianist, and advocate of American music. The collection was bequeathed to the University of North Texas Music Library upon her death in 1989.

Photo credit: UNT Portal to Texas History.

Source: Music of the Avant-Garde Magazine

The archives contain materials submitted to the seminal avant-garde magazine Source: Music of the Avant-Garde during the years 1967-1973. Submissions to the magazine range from the indeterminate, graphic, conceptual, performance art, electronic and multimedia. The collection includes scores, photographs, recordings, articles and correspondences both published and unpublished. In addition to original materials from issues 1-11, the collection includes scores, photographs, and layouts for the never-published issue 12.

Arnold Schoenberg - Hans Nachod

This collection contains items that once belonged to Schoenberg’s cousin Hans Nachod, an operatic tenor for whom the role of Waldemar in Gurre-Lieder was created. It includes many letters from Schoenberg to Nachod, a few from Nachod to Schoenberg, as well as a number of music manuscripts in Schoenberg’s hand, among which are early songs and arrangements.

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