Juilliard Historical Recordings from the 1950s Now Digitized and Available Through Juilliard's Online Media Archive

Monday, May 20, 2019
Press Release
Share on:

Highlights Include William Schuman’s Violin Concerto With Isaac Stern, Aaron Copland’s Piano Fantasy, and Performances by Van Cliburn and Leontyne Price

Project Funded With a Grammy Museum Grant

NEW YORK ––Juilliard historical recordings made during the tenure of its fourth and legendary president, composer William Schuman, who served from 1945 to 1961, have recently been preserved and digitized and are now available through Juilliard’s Lila Acheson Wallace Library and Archives at Juilliard’s online media archive.

Among the notable performances that have been preserved are William Schuman’s Violin Concerto with Isaac Stern as soloist and the premiere of Juilliard’s 50th anniversary commission of Aaron Copland’s Piano Fantasy by William Masselos. Other performances that were digitized include the Juilliard String Quartet in performances from its first decade; performances by distinguished faculty members including Rosina Lhévinne, cellist Leonard Rose, and singer Jennie Tourel; student performances by Van Cliburn, singers Leontyne Price (in a performance of Verdi’s Falstaff) and Shirley Verrett; and a chamber music concert with faculty members, Julius Baker, Walter Trampler, and Marcel Grandjany performing Debussy’s Sonata for flute, viola, and harp. (Selected highlights from the Juilliard Media Archives, 1951-1959, follow at the end of this press release.)

“We are delighted to be able to offer these invaluable recordings from Juilliard’s history to the general public and the scholarly community,” said Jane Gottlieb, Vice President for Library and Information Resources and Director of Juilliard’s C.V. Starr Doctoral Fellows Program. “Study of Juilliard’s performance history through preservation of media from its earliest decade of recording provides valuable primary source material to scholars of American music history, 20th-century cultural studies, dance history, musicology, and performance studies.”

As president of Juilliard, William Schuman (winner of the first Pulitzer Prize in music) significantly expanded Juilliard’s mission with the establishment of its Dance Division, under the direction of Martha Hill, in 1951. Among the Dance Division’s founding faculty members were Martha Graham, Antony Tudor, and José Limón. Schuman also established the Juilliard String Quartet as the school’s quartet in residence, and the Literature and Materials of Music program, a groundbreaking music theory curriculum. Schuman fostered an active commissioning program for new works, many of which were premiered for the school’s 50th anniversary celebration, Festival of American Music, in February 1956.

Juilliard received a Grammy Museum grant of $15,112 to fund the project.

Throughout its long history, the name Juilliard has been synonymous with the highest standards of excellence in the education of performing artists. The school’s alumni list includes such prominent performers as Van Cliburn, Itzhak Perlman, Midori, Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Renée Fleming, Leontyne Price, Shirley Verrett, and Audra McDonald. Equally important are the legendary faculty members who taught these artists and the new works created by Juilliard through its programs of commissions and premieres, most of which began in the 1950s, concurrent with the school’s use of audio recordings to document performances.

George Blood Audio in Philadelphia was responsible for the preservation work. Website development, metadata schema, and project management, was done by digital media librarian Eric Mortensen, with the assistance of other members of Juilliard’s library and archives staff. Preserved materials are accessible on Juilliard’s JMedia site, which utilizes OCLC’s Content DM hosting software. All of the performances preserved with the Grammy Foundation funding are accessible to the public.

About Juilliard’s Library and Archives

The Lila Acheson Wallace Library at Juilliard is a comprehensive resource for the school’s performance and research needs. The collection includes more than 87,000 music performance and study scores, including scholarly editions of composers’ collected works and other historical editions; 27,000 books (print and e-books) on music, dance, drama, and general academic subjects; 26,000 sound recordings (LPs, compact discs, reel-to-reel, cassette, and DAT tapes), and 3,000 videos. Juilliard’s library is the proud home of the Juilliard Manuscript Collection—one of the world’s greatest collections of autograph manuscripts, composer sketches, engraver proofs, and first editions. Complementing this extraordinary resource is the Peter Jay Sharp Special Collections, which includes numerous rare printed editions, manuscripts, manuscript facsimiles, and archival collections.

About The Juilliard School

Founded in 1905, The Juilliard School is a world leader in performing arts education. Juilliard’s mission is to provide the highest caliber of artistic education for gifted musicians, dancers, and actors from around the world so that they may achieve their fullest potential as artists, leaders, and global citizens.

Located at Lincoln Center in New York City, Juilliard offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in dance, drama (acting and playwriting), and music (classical, jazz, historical performance, and vocal arts). Currently more than 800 artists from 42 states and 45 countries are enrolled at Juilliard, where they appear in over 700 annual performances in the school’s five theaters; at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully and David Geffen Halls and at Carnegie Hall; as well as other venues around New York City, the country, and the world.

Beyond its New York campus, Juilliard is defining new directions in global performing arts education for a range of learners and enthusiasts through The Tianjin Juilliard School and K-12 educational curricula.

# # #


Juilliard Media Archives

1951 – 1959

Selected Highlights


March 15, 1951 Luigi Dallapiccola The Prisoner (first US performance)

February 22, 1952 Giuseppe Verdi Falstaff with Mary Leontyne Price as Mistress Ford

March 27, 1952 John Cage Lecture “Unpredictability in Music” with David Tudor, piano

January 23rd, 1953 Peter Illich Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat Minor, Op 23 with Van Cliburn, soloist and Jean Morel, conductor

April 1, 1955 Robert Mann, Two Fairy Tales with Robert Mann, violin, Lucy Rowan, narration, and Rosalind Koff, piano

January 25, 1956 Toshi Ichiyanagi Sonata for Violin and Piano with Kenji Kobayashi, violin, and Tossi Ichiyanagi, piano

February 10, 1956 Roger Sessions Concerto for Pianoforte and Orchestra with Beveridge Webster, soloist, and Jean Morel, conductor

February 10, 1956 Peter Mennin Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra with Leonard Rose, soloist, and Jean Morel, conductor

February 17, 1956 William Bergsma String Quartet No. 3 with the Juilliard String Quartet: Robert Mann, violin, Robert Koff, violin, Raphael Hillyer, viola, and Claus Adam, cello

February 17, 1956 Milton Babbitt Two Sonnets (Gerard Manley Hopkins) with Adolph Anderson, baritone, Claus Adam, cello, Raphael Hillyer, viola, and Donald Lituchy, clarinet

February 17, 1956 Henry Brant Encephalograms 2. Henry Brant, conductor

February 20, 1956 Vincent Persichetti Tenth Piano Sonata with Josef Raieff, soloist

February 22, 1956 Roy Harris Festival Folk Fantasy with Johana Harris, piano, Eugene Brice, solo speaker, John Johnson, tenor, and the Juilliard Chorus conducted by Frederick Prausnitz

February 24, 1956 William Schuman Concerto for Violin and Orchestra with Isaac Stern, soloist

March 27, 1957 Ludwig van Beethoven Sonata in G Major for Piano and Violin, Op 96 with Rosina Lhévinne, pianist, and Robert Mann, violinist

March 27, 1957 Franz Schubert Quintet in A Major (“Die Forellen”), Op. 114 with Rosina Lhévinne, piano, and the Juilliard String Quartet: Robert Koff, violin, Raphael Hillyer, viola, and Claus Adam, cello, and Stuart Sankey, double bass

October 25, 1957 Aaron Copland Piano Fantasy with William Masselos, piano (world premiere)

November 23, 1956 Giuseppe Verdi Part I Don Carlo with Shirley Verrett Carter as Princess Eboli

February 13, 1957 Johannes Brahms Vier Ernst Gesänge Op. 121 with Shirley Verrett Carter, mezzo-soprano, and Marius Nygaard, piano

April 5, 1957 Peter Warlock Capriol Suite for Two Pianos with Marvin Hamlisch and Raymond Jones, piano

November 13, 1957 Claude Debussy Sonata for Flute, Viola, and Harp with Julius Baker, flute, Walter Trampler, viola, and Marcel Grandjany, harp

December 18, 1957 Ferruccio Busoni Elegien with Edward Steuermann, piano

March 31, 1958 Songs by Claude Debussy Sonata for Violoncello and Piano with Leonard Rose, cello and Jack Maxin, piano

March 31, 1958 Songs by Debussy, Gretchaninoff, Tchaikowsky, and Rachmaninoff with Jennie Tourel, soprano, and Brooks Smith, piano

March 31, 1958 Ludwig van Beethoven Piano Trio in E-flat Major, Op. 1, No. 1 with Rosina Lhévinne, piano, Oscar Shumsky, violin, and Leonard Rose, cello


Composer William Schuman
Juilliard Historical Recordings from the 1950s Now Digitized and Available Through Juilliard's Online Media Archive (photo of William Schuman in 1943 by Rizzolla)