Historic Performances Now Online

Wednesday, Jun 05, 2019
Juilliard Journal
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Alumna Shirley Verrett in the 1950s
Alumna Shirley Verrett in the 1950s

Numerous recordings made during William Schuman's presidency now available online thanks to Grammy Museum grant

Talk about a time capsule—new digitizations of old recordings by Juilliard stars including Leontyne Price, Van Cliburn, and many more are now available through the Juilliard library. Jane Gottlieb, vice president for library and information resources, has announced that, thanks to a Grammy Museum grant of more than $15,000, numerous recordings made during the presidency of composer William Schuman (1945-1961) have been preserved and digitized. They are now available to the general public and scholarly community at jmedia.juilliard.edu.

Rosina Lhévinne teaching Van Cliburn
Pianist Rosina Lhévinne in her Juilliard studio teaching Van Cliburn, c. 1952

Gottlieb, who’s also the director of the C.V. Starr doctoral fellows program, noted that “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.”

Among the notable performances that have been preserved are 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 updated recordings include early concerts of the Juilliard String Quartet; performances by distinguished teachers including pianist Rosina Lhévinne (faculty 1925-76), cellist Leonard Rose (faculty 1946-86), and mezzo-soprano Jennie Tourel (faculty 1963-74); student performances by Van Cliburn (Diploma ’54, piano), singers Leontyne Price (’52) and Shirley Verrett (’61); and a chamber music concert featuring Julius Baker (faculty 1954-2003), Walter Trampler (faculty 1962-72), and Marcel Grandjany (faculty 1938-75) playing Debussy’s Sonata for flute, viola, and harp.