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Past Preservation Grant Awards (ARSC Grants Committee)

Select a year: 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006

The ARSC Grants Committee is pleased to announce the recipients of the Grants for Preservation of Classical Music Historical Recordings. The program for these grants was founded in 2004 by Al Schlachtmeyer and the ARSC Board of Directors, to encourage and support the preservation of historically significant sound recordings of Western Art Music by individuals and organizations.

2009 Grants

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra Archives Audio Preservation Project has been awarded a grant of $10,000 to assist in preserving, re-housing, and helping to make accessible to scholars and members of the public the historical recordings of the orchestra, in conjunction with in-kind contributions from the Symphony and its Annual Fund, Save America’s Treasures, and the National Historic Publications and Records Commission. The project will begin with audiotape recordings of broadcasts made in the 1950's and in danger of deterioration because of age and former storage conditions. The collection includes many performances which involved African-American composers and performers and which document the work of Music Directors Paul Paray, Sixten Ehrling, and Antal Dorati. The project forms part of the strategic plan of the orchestra’s new Music Director Leonard Slatkin.

2008 Grants

The Cleveland Orchestra

The Cleveland Orchestra has been awarded a grant of $10,000 for the orchestra's Archival Restoration Project, to help preserve the current sound archives of the orchestra: recordings of the Cleveland Orchestra subscription concerts from 1965 through the present. These include the last five years of George Szell's tenure as Music Director, the periods of leadership of Pierre Boulez, Lorin Maazel, Christoph von Dohnányi, and the present director, Franz Welser-Most, as well as such guest conductors as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland, Sir Colin Davis, Antal Dorati, Rafael Kubelik, Yehudi Menuhin, André Previn, Leopold Stokowski, Klaus Tennstedt, and others.

2007 Grants

The Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester

The Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester was awarded $9,593 to defray part of the cost of transferring 1,246 reels of ProDigital X-86 tape, recorded at the school between 1990 and 1998. The recordings, made on an obsolete reel-to-reel format, need to be transferred to viable digital storage before the school's equipment fails. The tapes, part of the Eastman Audio Archive, carry performances of the widest appeal and research applicability, and include ESM student ensembles, important guests, premieres of 34 works, and special events focusing on contemporary music and music of women composers.

National Public Radio

National Public Radio was awarded $10,000 to cover about 14 percent of the cost of its Studio 4A Performance Preservation Project, which will digitize and preserve 250 master-session DAT tapes determined to have important cultural and historical content. The Studio 4A classical recordings of interviews and performances by emerging and established artists are primarily from the program "Performance Today." These tapes are master recordings and the only copies in existence. The transfers will be stored in NPR's new content-management system.

2006 Grants

The Boston Symphony Orchestra

The Boston Symphony Orchestra was awarded a grant of $10,000 to preserve and make accessible the earliest recordings from the Boston Symphony Orchestra's Festival of Contemporary Music, an annual series of six to eight concerts performed by pre-professional musicians who were the Fellows of the Tanglewood Music Center, at Tanglewood, the orchestra's Summer music festival site in western Massachusetts. This project will preserve a total of 49 programs of the Festival of contemporary Music, spanning the years 1965 through 1981. This group of recordings comprises the earliest and the only known recordings of these concerts (which were not broadcast) known to exist.

H.W. Marston and Company

H.W. Marston and Company was awarded a grant of $7,000 to preserve, document, and disseminate the collection of recordings in the Julius Block Collection, made on Edison phonograph cylinders between 1891 and 1910 and thought to have been destroyed during World War II. Block was a German businessman who lived in St. Petersburg and who conceived of the phonograph as a device for music and the arts and a chronicler of history. He attracted influential musicians, poets, and actors to his home to see the machine and persuaded most of them to make recordings as well as to enter comments in his log, for example, Anton Arensky, Eddy Brown, Nicolai Figner, Jascha Heifetz, Josef Hofmann, Arthur Nikisch, Sergey Taneyev, Peter I. Tchaikovsky, and Count Leo Tolstoy. The recordings were found to reside in a museum in St. Petersburg.


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