BIOGRAPHICAL Quantity: 158.6 linear feet; @20,000 files

Description: Article, review, program, and photograph files on individual actors, dancers, musicians, composers, conductors, choreographers, singers and other performing artists.  Files mainly contain materials relating to an artist's Bay Area performances but do include national articles as well.  Major collections include:


Robert Ewen Maria Callas Collection  Quantity: 9.8 linear feet

Description:  Scrapbooks containing an exhaustive collection of newspaper and magazine clippings in several languages (mainly English and Italian) covering the life and career of prima donna Maria Callas (1923-1977), compiled by Robert Ewen.  Also includes books, 33 1/3 r.p.m. recordings, audio-taped interview, and opera video tapes.

Isadora Duncan Collection Quantity: 6 linear feet

Description: Biographical information, chronologies, clippings, photographs, programs, writings by and about the American pioneer of modern dance Isadora Duncan (1877-1927), covering her life and career with particular emphasis on her early years in the Bay Area. Also includes miscellany such as a copy of her baptismal certificate and information on various members of the Duncan family, and material on the Temple of the Wings.


La Estrellita Collection  Quantity: 6"

Description: Photographs, clippings, articles, sheet music, and programs documenting the career of Stella Hurtig (1881-1973) who performed in vaudeville as the Spanish dancer La Estrellita.

Kirsten Flagstad Collection  Quantity: 11.1 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1895-1981

Description: This collection, on permanent loan from the California Historical Society, is considered the largest assemblage of materials in the United States on the great Norwegian Wagnerian soprano Kirsten Flagstad (1895-1962). Includes press clippings, autographed and miscellaneous correspondence, photocopies of her diaries, discography, hundreds of photographs, programs, scores, and artifacts

Lola Montez Collection  Quantity: 1 foot

Description: Contains iconography, articles, artifacts, clippings on the flamboyant 19th century performer Lola Montez (1818-1861).               

Anna Pavlova Collection   Quantity: 3.1 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1909- present

Description: Programs, press clippings, photographs, two self portraits, and artifacts documenting the career of Russian-born prima ballerina Anna Pavlova (1881-1931).



Dates: 1849 - 1981
Description: Chronologically arranged newspaper articles and theatrical listings from Bay Area papers dating back to the Gold Rush. 

THE ELYSE ENG DANCE COLLECTION Quantity: 100 linear feet; @2,000 files
Description: Files contain programs, photographs, souvenir books, articles, reviews, press releases, press k its, flyers and/or brochures on more than 2,000 local, national and international ballet, folk, jazz, ethnic, tap and modern dance companies, as well as information on dance schools, festivals, specific ballets, dance styles and dances. Major collections include

American Ballet Theatre Collection  Guide

Ballets Russes Collection Guide

Bolshoi Ballet
Dance Action Collection
Joffrey Ballet
Martha Graham Dance Company

New York City Ballet
Oakland Ballet
Royal Ballet


See also: Biographical; Video Collection; Personal papers;


RICHARD F. LARSON LIBRETTI COLLECTION Quantity: 54.25 linear feet; 3,000 items
Inclusive dates: 1686 to present
Description: Contains more than 3,000 libretti collected by Mr. Larson former librarian at the University of California representing some 1,100 composers. Many are signed by the librettist and/or composer. Although the majority of libretti are texts for operas, other forms of musical theatre such as ballet, musical comedy, operetta, and children's theatre are also represented in this diverse collection.

LEGACY ORAL HISTORY PROJECT Quantity: 2 linear feet (ongoing)
Inclusive dates: 1988-present
History: Legacy is an oral history project designed to prevent the loss of historic continuity by preserving the artistic and personal records of San Francisco Bay Area dance community elders and other members who are confronting life-threatening illness, with a special interest in those challenging ARC or AIDS.
Description: Oral histories of Bay Area dance personalities, consisting of audio tapes, selected memorabilia, and hardbound books of transcriptions of the interviews, with illustrations and commentary.


Description: Programs, clippings, flyers, press releases and photographs of productions, organizations, festivals and/or presenters which showcase two or more categories of the performing arts including arts funders and arts education.  Major collections include:

CAL Performances

Festival 2000

San Francisco Performances

Stern Grove Festival

MUSIC COLLECTION Quantity: 63 linear feet; @4,000 files
Description: Programs, press releases, articles, reviews, flyers and/or brochures on approximately 4,000 local, national and international musical groups, organizations, associations, festivals, schools, and subjects.  Major collections include:

Berkeley Symphony
Cabrillo Music Festival
Carmel Bach Festival
Church & Temple Concerts
Mozart in His Time
Old First Concerts

Paul Masson Music Series Collection  

Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra Collection 

San Francisco Civic Chorale
San Francisco Conservatory of Music

San Jose Symphony


OAKLAND TRIBUNE THEATRE COLLECTION Quantity: 195 linear feet; @35,000
Inclusive dates: 1870-1970
Description: Theatrical clipping files from the Oakland Tribune contain press releases, articles and reviews from local, national and industry publications such as Variety on approximately 15,000 individual performers and 20,000 productions, buildings, and companies. 

OPERA COLLECTION Quantity: 17 linear feet
Description: Files containing programs, articles, flyers, press releases, clippings, reviews, and photographs of local, national and international opera companies and productions from the Gold Rush to the present.  Major collections include:

Cosmopolitan Opera Collection 

Metropolitan Opera Company Collection

Pacific Coast Opera Company Collection

Pocket Opera Collection  

San Carlo Opera



POSTER COLLECTION Quantity: 1,600 items

Description: Posters of local or touring dance, music, opera, and theatrical productions in the Bay Area from the 19th and 20th century .  Also includes circus and magic posters.




Inclusive dates: 1850s - 1980s

Description: Scrapbooks contain newspaper and magazine articles, photographs, programs, playbills and cast sheets of the various dance, opera, theatre and music productions and artists who have appeared in the Bay Area over the last one hundred plus years.  Among the treasures n the collections are rare programs from early San Francisco theaters, signed Genthe photographs and autographed note cards and letters from artists and personalities such as Otis Skinner, Nellie Melba, Charles Dana Gibson, Maude Adams, Ethel Barrymore, and Ignace Jan Paderewski.




Inclusive dates: 1840s-

Description: Contains songs from stage and film, popular songs and songs associated with dances, a particular performer, or those dealing with themes such as war. Major collections include:

African American Sheet Music Collection  Quantity: 3.3 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1843-1977. Most date from the 1880s to the 1920s.

Description Sheet music (approx. 300 titles) written either by African Americans, or for African American performers and/or minstrel shows, or written in "Negro dialect".  The collection includes Civil War songs, spirituals, minstrel songs, show tunes, cake walks, novelty songs, ragtime, blues, Dixieland, and pop music. The covers are often illustrated with portraits of the performers. Included among the performers and composers are such notables as Christy's Minstrels, Nat "King" Cole, Stephen Foster, Al Jolson, George Walker, and Bert Williams.

Bob Johnson Sheet Music Collection Quantity: 60,000 pieces

60,000-piece sheet music collection of songs from films, stage and more than twenty other categories ranging from rock and pop to wars and world's fairs.



Alan Farley Collection          

Series 1: "Performing Arts Profiles"  Quantity: 55 linear feet; 1,164 (ongoing)

Inclusive dates: 1977 to present

Biography: KALW-FM radio announcer

Description: Approximately 2,000 radio interviews with Bay Area, national and international creators and performers from theater, film, television, opera, dance, and music ranging from Aaron Copland, Tommy Tune, Angela Lansbury, to Richard Pryor.

Series 2: "The Songs of Noel Coward"  Quantity: 3.3 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1984-1988

Description: Audio tapes from radio broadcasts of recordings of the songs of Noel Coward, including "If Love Were All", "I'll See You Again", "London Morning", and "Someday I'll Find You".


Chevron "Standard Hour" Collection  

Quantity: 665 original discs; 265 DAT reference copies

Inclusive dates: 1941-1953

History: The Standard Hour, the longest-running classical radio series in the West, was funded throughout its history by Standard Oil (now Chevron USA) and marks the first documented corporate arts support in the United States.

Description: The collection consists of 265 recordings produced during the live broadcasts of the Standard Hour, featuring the San Francisco Symphony and other Western symphony orchestras with notable guest artists such as Kirsten Flagstad, Igor Stravinsky, Marian Anderson, Leopold Stokowski.

KSAN Radio Archive

Quantity: 2, 200 reel-to-reel recordings

Inclusive dates: 1967-1981

Description: Recordings of live rock, blues, and folk concerts and interviews broadcast on KSAN radio from 1967-1981



Quantity: 138 linear ft.

Inclusive dates: 1850 -

Description:  Collection is divided into three main areas - Company/Subject, Play by Title, and Theater buildings.  

Theater Companies/Subjects

Description: Files contain programs, flyers, brochures, articles, clippings, and photographs on theatrical subjects, genres, and hundreds of Bay Area companies from the 19th century to the present including:


Actor's Workshop Collection

American Conservatory Theatre Collection  

Berkeley Repertory Theatre Collection  

Cat's Paw Palace of Performing Arts Collection  

Chinese Theater Collection  

Eureka Theatre Collection

Japanese Theater Collection  

Magic Theatre  

Minstrelsy Collection  

Oregon Shakespeare Festival Collection 

Pasadena Playhouse Collection  

Players Club Collection  

San Francisco Civic Light Opera Collection  Guide

Theatre Arts Colony Collection Guide


Plays by Title Collection

Quantity: 75 linear feet; @8,000 (ongoing)

Inclusive dates: 1851-present

Description: Materials documenting the San Francisco Bay Area's rich dramatic history, beginning in the early days of the gold rush, with plays such as Cherry and Fair Star of 1851, and continuing through today, with such productions as Angels in America.  These include brochures, flyers, clippings of press reviews, photographs, press releases, programs, and scripts, all documenting performances at theatres around the Bay Area.

Theater Buildings Collection

Quantity: 45 linear feet (ongoing)
Inclusive dates: 1849-present
Description: Assemblage of materials on the great playhouses of the Bay Area, from the Barbary Coast's infamous Bella Union to the Yerba Buena Gardens.  Includes playbills from performances, articles and photographs of the buildings, seating charts, etc. (varies by building).  Collection contains information and photos on theaters throughout California, the United States and Europe as well.  

Alcazar  Quantity: 1.8 linear ft.

Columbia  Quantity: 3.4 linear ft.

Curran  Quantity: 4 linear ft.          

Geary Quantity: 2.5 linear ft.

Golden Gate   Quantity: 1 linear ft.

Orpheum  Quantity: 2.6 linear ft.

Tivoli  Quantity: 1 linear ft.

War Memorial Opera House  Quantity: 5.5 linear ft.

Dates: 1800s -
Description: 2,000 books and periodicals covering costume, fashion and set design from around the world as well as military, heraldry, toy theatres, and masks with hundreds of fashion plates from Europe.


Mary Fisher Greenfield Collection Quantity: 1006

Inclusive dates: 1988 to 2013

Description: Videotapes by Ted Helminski of Bay Area dance, music, opera and theatre productions from companies such as Oakland Ballet, Smuin Ballet, Lines Comtemporary Ballet, ODC, Pocket Opera, Joe Goode Performance Group, Harupin Ha, Merce Cunningham, and Margaret Jenkins, Lamplighters, American Conservatory Theatre.


Theater Film Archives Quantity: 600

Inclusive dates: 1986 -

Description: West Coast repository for films and videotapes of productions by Actors' Equity companies. American Conservatory Theatre, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Eureka, American Musical Theater of San Jose, Marin Theatre Company, Theatre on the Square, San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, and Theater Works.

Restrictions: Upon deposit, the tapes may be viewed only by those associated with the production. Following the closing of the production, the tapes may then be viewed by Equity members, and by members of other professional guilds.  After two years, the tapes will be available on an in-house use basis to individual students, student study groups, and professional theatre individuals.



Circus Collection  Quantity: 1.9 linear feet (ongoing)

Inclusive dates: ca. 1800 to present

Description: Programs, clippings, flyers, postcards and photographs from Bay Area, national, and international circus groups and performers, including early circus memorabilia. 



Renaissance Pleasure Faire Collection  Quantity: 2.7 linear feet (ongoing)

Inclusive dates: 1963-present

History:  Conceived and created in 1963 by Ron and Phyllis Patterson, the Renaissance Pleasure Faire originated as a medieval children's fair and a unique background for a commedia dell'arte performance.  Now produced by the Living History Centre, the annual Faire presents "troubadours, Morris dancers, mummers, magicians, sorcerers, players of ancient instruments and players of the play, strolling minstrels, jesters and jugglers, pipers and puppeteers, tumblers and commedia dell'arte players from homes, universities, high schools and theater groups from all over California."

Description:  The collection documents both the Northern and Southern Faires, including newspapers, photographs, posters, press clippings, an interview with founder Phyllis Patterson, and miscellany.

Description: This artificial collection consists of photographs and various forms of paper documentation of the history of San Francisco not directly related (often tangentially related) to the performing arts.  It is here that materials on various fairs and expositions (1898, 1915, 1939) is stored, along with files on local historical figures such as Emperor Norton.




Bernhard Abramowitsch Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1937-1986
Description: Clippings, personal correspondence, flyers, photographs (portraits and informal), programs, performance tapes and interviews of German-born pianist Bernhard Abramowitsch (1906-1986) who settled in San Francisco in 1939.  As well as performing, he taught students at the University of California, Mills College, the San Francisco Conservatory, and Holy Names College.
Ackerman Family Papers Quantity: 1.1 linear foot
Description: Family letters and photographs of Charles Ackerman (1850-1909), vice-president and one of the founders of the Orpheum circuit and president of the Grand Opera House, the Tivoli Opera House, and the Chutes Amusement Park in San Francisco, and his son, Irving (1885-?) who formed a vaudeville booking agency, built the San Francisco Warfield Theater and was a founder and vice-president of Columbia Pictures.
Also includes printed matter concerning the early Twentieth Century theater chains and their operation on the West Coast and many photos of dogs, Irving's lifelong hobby.
Kurt Herbert Adler Photo Collection Quantity: 6.8 linear feet
Inclusive dates: [1943-1981]
Description: 42 framed black-and-white photographs from the personal collection of Kurt Herbert Adler (1905-1988) who worked for the San Francisco Opera from 1943-1981, moving from chorus master to artistic director (1953) to general director (1956). The photographs feature major performers with the San Francisco Opera.
John Afendras Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1920s-70s
Description: John Afendras (1897-1976) was a Greek-born classically trained violinist who led a varied career in San Francisco musical circles conducting an all-girl tango orchestra as well as the San Francisco Municipal Band. The collection contains more than 150 photographs including many inscribed photos of individuals associated withAfendras and various ensemble Greek orchestras as well as clippings, programs, and letters.

David Ahlstrom Papers Quantity: 11 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1949-1990
Biography: Ahlstrom (1927-1993) was a composer,  music director and conductor of BAYO and VOICES/SF, an ensemble specializing in performances of new American operas and works for musical theater.
Description: Contains musical scores, recordings, photographs, programs, published and unpublished writings and biographical information.

Vittorio Arimondi Papers Quantity: .5 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1890s-1920s
Biography: Arimondi (1883-1931) was an Italian operatic basso, and contemporary of Enrico Caruso, who performed throughout Europe and became a member of the Chicago Opera Company in 1910.
Description: Correspondence, programs, portraits, a scrapbook and artifacts. Of note is a signed drawing of Arimondi by Caruso, an autographed music manuscript by Arturo Toscanini, and numerous signed photographs and letters of operatic greats.
Leonora Wood Armsby Papers Quantity: 5.8 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1910-1960 (much undated material)
Biography: President and managing director of the Musical Association, the managing board of the Symphony, from 1937 to 1954.  With Pierre Monteux, Leonora Wood Armsby revitalized the San Francisco Symphony in 1934.
Description: Includes art works, awards, books, clippings, press materials, writings, a reel-to-reel audiotaped concert, and artifacts such as an inscribed music stand and phonograph player from Pierre Monteux.  Of special note are more than 62 autographed photographs of prominent musicians and personalities.

Katherine Barieau Papers Quantity: .8 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1985-1992
Biography: Barieau (1917- ) is a Bay Area watercolor artist, teacher, and lecturer who has exhibited her work throughout Northern California.
Description: Press clippings and matted watercolor sketches made at the Stern Grove Festival, depicting performers, conductors, and audience members during the summer outdoor performance series.
Lillian Bauer Photograph Collection Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1948-1957
Description: Black and white photographs taken by Lillian Bauer of Merola Opera productions at Stern Grove.  These photographs include unique photographs of early SF Opera performances, and notable guest artists, as well as the last photograph taken of Maestro Gaetano Merola.

Tandy Beal Family Papers Quantity: 33 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1930-2001

Biography: Tandy Beal is an American director, choreographer, performer and teacher of dance. She has performed as a solo artist and in her ensemble Tandy Beal & Company founded in 1974. She wrote, directed and choreographed the New Pickle Circus and choreographed all of the characters' movement for Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas. John Beal, father of Tandy Beal, was an actor of stage, film and radio, as well as a director, a portrait artists, and the proprietor of the Actor's Hobby Market. Helen Craig, mother of Tandy Beal, was an actress and teacher primarily associated with live theater but she also appeared in several television shows and made for TV movies.

Description: The Beal Family Papers document the careers of John Beal, Helen Craig and Tandy Beal. The collection includes personal and business materials, correspondence, publicity materials, news clippings, programs, scripts, photographs and scrapbooks.


Christopher Beck Papers Quantity: 5.3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1966-1989
Biography: Choreographer and dance teacher who, in 1975, formed Christopher Beck & Company and founded Centerspace Theater in San Francisco..
Description: Includes videotapes, films, photographs, slides, contact sheets, negatives, audio cassette tapes, clippings, features, reviews, programs, press releases, posters, biographical material, a script, and original promotional art work.


Rachmael ben Avram Papers Quantity: 2 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1950-1960
Biography: Rachmael ben Avram founded the Company of the Golden Hind in 1951. He directed the Cathedral Civic Theater and was general director of the Oakland National Repertory Theater.
Description: Programs, slides and photos of Company of the Golden Hind and Oakland National Repertory Theater productions.

Boris Blinder Papers Quantity: 2 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1929 - 1964
Biography: Boris Blinder (1898?-1987) was principal cellist with the San Francisco Symphony for over 20 years. 
Description:  Includes recordings, photographs, both family and formal, including many of his brother Naoum Blinder, who served as concertmaster of the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra from 1932 to 1957.
Leah Marie Boehm/Marissa de Leon Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1930s-50s
Biography: Leah Marie Boehm (1911-) and Marissa de Leon (1911-) were dance teachers and Ph.D candidates at the University of California at Berkeley.  
Description: Materials on South American dance, covering Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Uruguay.  Includes sheet music, dance step instruction, handwritten scores, pencil costume sketches, a map of the dances of Colombia, typewritten notes on dances, postcards, and 33 1/3 r.p.m. records of native Argentine folk dances.
William Brennan Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1976-1985
Biography: Brennan (1921?-1992) was manager of the Orpheum Theatre in San Francisco and talent coordinator of the Mary Martin PBS series Over Easy.
Description: Papers dealing with the renovation of the Orpheum Theate and the Mary Martin at Davies Hall benefit.
Edith Brozak Etching Collection Quantity: .5 linear foot, oversized
Inclusive dates: 1977
Description: Hand-tinted color etchings on a dance theme by Edith Brozak depicting such subjects as Swan LakeAllegro Brillante by George Balanchine, Trinity by Gerald Arpino, and Dancers at a Gathering based on a ballet by Jerome Robbins.
Yvonne Cam Papers Quantity: 1.3 linear feet
Description: Photographs, flyers, publicity materials, programs relating to Rudolf Serkin.. 
Jack Chen Papers Quantity: 3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1853-1983
Biography: Chen (?-1995) was an artist, journalist, author and co-founder of the Pear Garden in the West.
Description:  Photographs and story boards for the Pear Garden in the West exhibit as well as the manuscript for his book Pear Garden in the West.
Lew Christensen / Gisella Caccialanza Papers Quantity: 6.75 linear feet
Inclusive dates: ca. 1926- 1988
Biography: Lew Christensen (1909-1984) was America's first great classical male danseur, choreographer of the first "all-American" ballet (Filling Station, in 1938), and the Director of the San Francisco Ballet from 1951 to 1984.  Gisella Caccialanza (1914- ) was a student of Enrico Cecchetti, a prima ballerina of the San Francisco Ballet and the wife of Lew Christensen.
Description: Includes biographical materials, brochures, chronologies, correspondence, clippings, flyers, libretti, memorial programs, manuscripts, hundreds of historic photographs and negatives (some by renowned American photographer George Platt Lynes), postcards, programs, souvenir books, scrapbooks, and artifacts.
Adela Chu Papers Quantity: 1.3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1978-1992
Biography: Adela Chu (1946- ) is a Panamanian-born dancer and teacher who specializes in Afro-Caribbean dance.  She brought the exotic and colorful celebration of Carnaval,  to the streets of San Francisco's Mission District in 1976.  She was also the first to bring Carnaval and the "First Night" New Year's Eve celebration to Hawaii.  Description: Fliers, copies of color and black and white photographs, press clippings, programs, and videos.
Robert Commanday Papers Quantity: 9.5 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1911-2000
Biography: Robert Commanday was the music critic for the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper from 1964-1993 and founded San Francisco Classical Voice.
Description:  Clippings, news releases, newsletters, programs, souvenir booklets, etc., from dance, opera, and symphony performances.  The programs contain Mr. Commanday's original handwritten notes used for his reviews.

Donald John Coney Slide Collection Quantity: 1.4 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1967-1972
Description: Slides of San Francisco Opera, American Conservatory Theater, and Magic Theater productions taken by photographer Donal John Coney.

Betty Miller Cooper Photographic Collection Quantity: 2.3 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1932-1986

Biography: Betty Miller Cooper was the wife of Robert Watt Miller, who served as President of the San Francisco Opera Association for many years.

Description: 150 photographs of singers, musicians, and actors, most of them autographed and inscribed.

Rich Darnell Papers Quantity: .5 linear ft.; 1 box
Description: Flyers, press releases, programs, newsletters of the High Risk Group from dancer and choreograher Rick Darnell
Iris de Luce Papers Quantity: 2 linear ft.; 2 boxes, 1 print box
Inclusive dates: 1925-1979
Description: Clippings, correspondence, photographs, programs, ballet sketches and costume designs of ballet dancer and teacher de Luce (1903- ). De Luce appeared in motion pictures with Albertina Raasch's ballet company, danced with the San Francisco Opera Ballet and directed the Iris de Luce Ballet Studio in Sausalito.

Edna Smith De Nunzio Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1923-1940s
Biography: Edna Smith sang with the San Francisco Opera beginning in its very first season, 1923.  She then became a protegee of the famed soprano Gina Cigna, and went on to sing in the major European opera houses.
Description: The core of this collection consists of an impressive group of autographed photographs and several autograph books, including virtually everyone involved with the San Francisco Opera in its early days. Also represented are people who were involved in the beginnings of the San Francisco Opera Ballet, the direct ancestor of today's San Francisco Ballet. Included are clippings, programs, and posters.
Antoine De Vally Papers Quantity: 1.4 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1908-1928
Biography: Belgian operatic tenor who was Director General of the De Vally French Opera Company and established the Oakland Civic Opera Association. He was instrumental in the proposition of the San Francisco Opera Association, and taught music in San Francisco.  Description: Clippings, correspondence, financial records, and miscellany such as licenses, a chorus notebook, and an interesting 1924 report to R. I. Bentley, president of the San Francisco Opera Association. Also includes materials on his relief work for Belgium in World War I .
Julian Dove Papers Quantity: .5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1935
Biography: Set designer
Description: Original scene designs for the San Francisco Opera's first production of Richard Wagner's "Ring" cycle. Also includes scrapbook on his career.
Vera Edmondson Papers Quantity: 1.3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1920s-1970s
Description: Brochures, correspondence, programs, tickets, photographs (some autographed), a handmade calendar and other memorabilia of popular 20s and 30s singer and radio star Jessica Dragonette collected by family friend Vera Edmondson.

Phil Elwood Papers Quantity: 26 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1952-2005
Biography: Philip "Phil" Elwood (1926-2006) was a music journalist and radio broadcaster. From 1965-2000, he covered jazz, blues, rock, cabaret and entertainment scene for the San Francisco Examiner.
Description: Articles and drafts written by Elwood, notes taken at various events he attended, correspondence, and other materials collected by and/or sent to Elwood due to his dual roles as radio broadcaster and music journalist. Collected materials include items such as press kits, event programs, biographical sketches, and other related documents.
Herbert Felsenfeld Papers Quantity: 1.5 linear ft.; 1 carton, 1 box
Description:  Minutes, notes, memos, correspondence and other papers relating to the Cultural Affairs Task Force.
Alexander Fried Papers Quantity: 6.7 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1930-1977
Biography: Performing arts critic for the San Francisco Examiner who for over forty years wrote reviews of dance, opera, and music performances in the Bay Area.
Description: Clippings of Alexander Fried's reviews.
Charles Girvin Papers Quantity: .8 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1955-56, 1974-78
Biography: Charles Girvin (1935-19??) was a classical ballet teacher who graduated from the School of American Ballet under the direction of George Balanchine and taught students throughout the Bay Area.
Description: The focus of this collection is on notebooks kept by Mr. Girvin whichcover the time he spent with the School of American Ballet, the Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo, the Balanchine Theatre School, the Royal Academy of Dance, his classes in Sacramento, and the Cecchetti Society summer school.

Robert Gladstein Papers Quantity: 5 1/2 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1953-1988

Biography: Robert Gladstein (1943-1992) was a ballet dancer and choreographer.  He was a principal dancer with San Francisco Ballet and served as the company's Ballet Master, Assistant Director and Artistic Coordinator. 

Description: The papers document Gladstein's career from 1953-1988 and include reviews, articles, photographs, programs, souvenir books, and correspondence.


Wilton Graff (1903-1969) Papers Quantity: .8 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1929- 1965
Biography: Wilton Graff (1903-1969) was an actor who appeared on Broadway and in stock companies and little theaters from coast to coast.  He was active in the Theater Guild and spent several years with the San Francisco Civic Light Opera.  He also enjoyed a Hollywood movie career, acting in over fifty films.
Description: The collection includes biographical material, cast sheets, contracts, correspondence, obituaries, press clippings, photographs, programs, publicity materials, and scripts.  Also includes autographed material from such actors as Helen Hayes, Laurence Olivier, and Vivien Leigh.



Sid Grauman Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot

Inclusive dates: 1918 – 1949

Biography: Sid Grauman (1879-1950) built several theaters in San Francisco before moving to Los Angeles where he built and operated the Million Dollar, Egyptian and Chinese Theaters

Description: Contains photographs of Grauman's theaters, some personal photographs, photographs of actors and some programs and clippings.


Anna Halprin Papers Quantity: 65 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1920-
Biography: For the past forty years, Anna Halprin has been an innovator in dance teaching, performance and choreography.  Her workshops gave early training to such choreographers as Yvonne Rainer and Trisha Brown, and over the years she has collatborated with composers such as John Cage, Terry Riley, Meredith Monk, and La Monte Young.
Description: Contains correspondence, reports, newsclippings, programs, flyers, pictorial dance scores, posters, scrapbooks, music scores, video and audiocassettes documenting Halprin's work with cancer and AIDS patients, the humanistic psychology movement in California, and the modern and post-modern dance movement in the San Francisco Bay Area and its influence on art in New York and beyond.
Russell Hartley Papers Quantity: 12 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1924-1983
Biography: Russell Hartley was a designer and character dancer with the San Francisco Ballet in the 1940s and 50s.  He designed the costumes for the first full-length Nutcracker performed in the United States and founded the Archives for the Performing Arts, now the San Francisco Performing Arts Library and Museum.
Description: Contains correspondence, diaries, scrapbooks, photos, artwork, writings, research papers and personal letters documenting Hartley's life, career and friendships with numerous San Francisco artists and personalities.

Ruth Hatfield Papers Quantity: 7.5 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1937-1989

Biography: Ruth Hatfield (1914-1999) was a dancer, choreographer, and dance educator. Hatfield was born in Modesto, CA and moved to San Francisco in 1942 where she helped establish the San Francisco Dance Center, taught dance at Live Oak Recreation Center in Berkeley, started the Teen Dance Workshop and taught dance at Holy Names College.

Description: Contains clippings, photographs, lesson plans, class and choreography notes.

Mrs. Louis Hendricks Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1961-67
Biography: Mrs. Hendricks served on the Board of Directors of the San Francisco Ballet Guild from 1960-1969.  

Description: Materials documenting six years of the San Francisco Ballet Guild, including annual reports, correspondence, financial materials, invitations, meeting minutes, press clippings, press releases, and rosters.
Gustav Hinrichs (1850- 1942) Papers Quantity: 8 linear feet
Inclusive dates: ca. 1874- ca. 1934
Biography: This noted German-American conductor and composer served as music director of the Tivoli Opera House and in 1881 founded the San Francisco Philharmonic Society, precursor of the San Francisco Symphony. In 1885 he moved to Philadelphia and formed his own opera company, presenting the American premieres of Cavalleria rusticana and Pagliacci.
Description:  This collection includes original scores, libretti, and play scripts, and handwritten sheet music as well as personal correspondence, financial materials, photographs, press clippings, programs,  and scrapbooks.

Jesse Hollis Papers Quantity: 10 linear feet
Inclusive dates:1977-1988
Biography: Free-lance Bay Area set designer who designed sets for American Conservatory Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Lamplighters and Magic Theatre.
Description: Sketches and plans for more than 60 productions from the companies listed above as well as Sacramento Theatre Company, Fortworth Opera and San Fancisco Ballet, 3 set models and a few photographs.
Mrs. George F. Jewett Papers Quantity: 2.2 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1969-1982
Biography: Lucy Jewett is a former dancer, Trustee Emeritus and former Vice President of the San Francisco Ballet, and one of the Bay Area's leading philanthropists.
Description: Administrative files from the Board of Directors of the San Francisco Ballet, including financial materials, annual reports, monthly board meetings, minutes from executive committee sessions, agendas for annual retreats, etc. The papers provide an in-depth look at the Ballet's administration during one of its most crucial decades, the 1970s, when the company, after teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, became one of the leading American examples of a professionally managed arts organization.
Lenore Peters Job Papers Quantity: 13 linear feet
Inclusive dates: [ca. 1910-85, much material is undated]
Biography: San Francisco modern dance pioneer who, for more than 50 years, directed the Bay Area's oldest dance school, the Peters Wright Creative Dance School, founded in 1912 by Job's sister, Anita Peters Wright.
Description:  Contains awards, biographical material, books, correspondence, diaries, drawings, manuscripts, notebooks, obituaries, photographs, programs, press clippings, and posters.  Provides invaluable documentation on the emergence of modern dance as one of the United States' few indigenous art forms.
Katharine Kahrs Photography Collection Quantity: 2.3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1980-86
Biography: Bay Area free lance photographer from 1982 to 1992.
Description: Negatives, contact sheets, color and black-and-white photographs, some with accompanying programs and press clippings, of rehearsals and performances of several Bay Area dancers and dance companies, particularly those of the San Francisco Peninsula area.
Anita Kane Papers Quantity: 5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1950-1990
Biography: Anita Kane (1910-1994) was a dance teacher who helped introduce classical ballet to the Philippines, organized the Arts Council of the Philippines and its first truly professional ballet company.  In later life she was the director of dance studios in Healdsburg and Rohnert Park.
Description: Writings by Anita Kane, scores, awards, news clippings, signed photos of ballet stars and the Philippines, programs, and scrapbooks.

Irma Kay Opera Ring Theatre Collection Quantity: 3.5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1954-1967
Biography/History: Irma Kay was the founder and director of Opera Ring Theatre from 1954 to 1967. Her vision was to produce operas in English and in-the-round in order to reach out to and educate an audience unfamiliar with traditional opera production.  Kurt Weill's Threepenny Opera had its west coast debut at the Opera Ring Theatre in 1955. In the 1960s the focus of the Theatre shifted to genre of classical musical comedy.  

Description: This collection includes art work, audio cassettes, costume designs, lighting diagrams, photographs, press clippings, promotional material, scrapbook, scripts, set designs, stage diagrams, tech and prop lists, and miscellaneous artifacts, documenting the history the Opera Ring Theater.  Other than a permit and union contract, there are few administrative records.
Leon Kellogg/Walter Witt Papers Quantity: .2 linear foot
Inclusive dates: ca. 1890- ca. 1971 (much undated material)
Description: Correspondence, personal papers, scripts, published and unpublished articles written by Kellogg and Witt, photographs, press clippings, and programs, with a particular emphasis on Wagner and Wagnerian opera.
Constance and Emily Keohan Papers Quantity: .5 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1930s-1940s (most material is undated)
Biography: Constance Keohan was a music teacher at Galileo High School, and her [sister?] Emily was the head of the department of Home Economics of the Sacramento School District.  Constance became the first female conductor of the San Francisco Symphony.
Description: The collection includes materials relating to the musical careers of Emily and Constance Keohan, particularly Constance's early years at Galileo High School.  This collection provides a glimpse into the process of women breaking into what has been traditionally considered a "male" profession, conducting.  Included is handwritten music, programs, and photographs.
Chester Kessler Dance Photography Collection Quantity: 2.3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1949-1974
Biography: Chester Monroe Kessler (1919-1979) was a California-based photographer who studied with Minor White, Bill Grant Jr., andOliver Gagliani and had three one-man shows at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and various shows around the United States.
Description: Photographs of important local dancers and dance companies, negatives and transparencies, biographical information. Includes such notables as George Balanchine, Ruth Beckford, Carlos Carvajal, Lew Christensen, Anna Halprin, Welland Lathrop, and Zack Thompson.

Hanns and Virginia Kolmar Papers
Longtime San Francisco theatrical press agent handled such companies and performers as the Lamplighters,  Circle Star theater, Barbara Cook, Shirley Bassey
Wanda Krasoff Papers
Pianist and teacher performed with San Francisco Symphony and on the Standard Hour broadcasts

Hans Leschke (1883-1973) Papers Inclusive dates: ca. 1901-1973 (much undated material)
Biography: Founder and director of the San Francisco Municipal Chorus for twenty-five years. 
Description: This collection consists of the personal archives of Dr. Hans Leschke, documenting his life and his career with the SF Municipal Chorus.  Includes certificates, contracts, correspondence, obituaries, photographs and negatives, and personal miscellany such as a passport and college documents. Almost all material is in German.
Joah Lowe (1953- 1988) Papers
Inclusive dates: ca. 1970-1988 (much undated material)
Biography: Bay Area choreographer, dancer and teacher.
Description: . Includes biographical material, chronologies, correspondence, obituaries, photographs (color and black-and-white), press clippings, programs, repertories, audio tapes and video tapes.


Francesca Ludova Papers Quantity: .5 linear foot
Inclusive dates: ca. 1917-1967 (much undated material)
Biography: Francesca Ludova (1907-1979) danced with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet, with the SF Opera Ballet in the late 1920s, and directed the Kosloff ballet studio.  She appeared in several Hollywood films in the 1930s and then operated the San Jose Ballet School with her husband, Dmitri Romanoff, who became regisseur for American Ballet Theatre.
Description: The collection includes a scrapbook containing postcard correspondence from all over the world, with images depicting dance from many different countries, a commemorative pin from her teacher Theodore Kosloff, and 33 movie stills and studio publicity portraits of movie stars from the 1910s through the 1930s, some autographed, including such notables as Greta Garbo, Groucho Marx, Maurice Chevalier, and Norma Shearer. 
Jose Manero Papers Quantity: .4 linear foot (oversized)
Inclusive dates: ca. 1910s-1947 (early scrapbook pages are undated)
Biography: Jose Manero began his career a dancer in Mexico City's Ballet Carroll, then toured the United States and Europe with a partner as the popular ballroom dance team "Jose and Paquita".  He joined the army at the time of World War II, continued dancing while he was in the service, performed benefit shows, and taught dance classes on the army base.  In after leaving the army Manero taught students and performed throughout California with a dance group, billed as "Jose Manero and his Altenitas".  In 1945 he choreographed Blue Plaza with Willam Christensen for the SF Ballet, and went on to present many critically acclaimed programs of Mexican dance in conjunction with the Ballet.  
Description: Scrapbook pages documenting Manero's dance career, including photographs, press clippings, and programs.  Includes interesting clippings from army newspapers, documenting his dance activities as a soldier during World War II.

Henri McDowell Papers Quantity: 29.5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: late 1950s- 1970s
Biography: Henrietta "Henri" McDowell was SF Ballet's principal photographer for twenty years, from the late 1950s through the 1970s.
Description: The collection consists of more than 20,000 black-and-white photographs, negatives, and color slides which document practically every ballet produced by the San Francisco Ballet from the late 1950s to the mid-1970s. The photographs capture the Ballet in performance, backstage, and on tour. Includes photographs of such personages as Rudolf Nureyev, Dame Margot Fonteyn, and Gelsey Kirkland.
Ethyl McFarland Joy Papers Quantity: 2.6 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1910-83
Biography: Ethyl McFarland Joy (1896-1983) was a dancer and an actress in San Francisco.  She wasa member of the Alcazar Theatre's stock company and appeared in vaudeville revues at the Orpheum Theatre before she began teaching dance with her mother, Cora McFarland.
Description: Includes music scores, certificates, correspondence, notes, photographs, programs, and scrapbooks containing clippings and photographs of Ethyl in her roles in local theaters around the 1910s.

Adrain Michaelis Papers Quantity: 24 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1890-2000
Biography: Adrian Michaelis was the producer and program manager for Standard Oil Company's The Standard Hour radio broadcast, subsequent School Broadcast, and television show.
Description:The collection includes correspondence, libretti, clippings, photographs, negatives, programs, brochures, flyers, souvenir books, scrapbooks, sheet music, and transcripts.


Robert Watt Miller Papers Quantity: 8 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1937-1969

Biography: Robert Watt Miller (1899-1970) was a noted San Francisco industrialist, civic leader and President of the San Francisco Opera Association from 1937-1942 and from 1951-1966.

Description: Papers document Miller's activities as President of Opera Association and as a board member of the San Francisco Symphony and De Young Museum. Include minutes, reports, budgets, correspondence, clippings and several photo albums document SF Opera seasons.


Virgil Morton Papers Quantity: 2 linear feet
Inclusive dates: (1913-1970)
Biography: Virgil Morton (1913- ) was a dancer, dance teacher, and dance writer.  He performed with Fanchon-Marco and in Theodore Kosloff's Hollywood Bowl productions and had minor dancing parts in motion pictures before moving to San Francisco where he taught ballroom dancing and became involved with various local folk dance groups.  He was the first teacher of the International Folk Dancers and authored three books on the subject of dance.
Description:  Programs, newsletters, correspondence and photos from various folk dance organizations and dance and theatre companies.
Kyra Nijinsky Pastel Collection Quantity: .3 linear foot (oversized)
Inclusive dates: ca. 1959-66 (most undated)
Biography: Kyra Nijinsky was the daughter of the great ballet dancer Vaslav Nijinsky.  She studied ballet with her aunt, Bronislava Nijinska, Mordkin, and Nicholas Legat, and studied modern dance with Isadora Duncan's half-sister, Elizabeth.  In the 1960s she took up art and had her first show at the Russell Hartley Gallery in 1965.
Description: 20 original pastel drawings by Kyra Nijinsky include self-portraits, religious themes such as angels and the Virgin Mary, flowers, and, significantly, drawings of her father, Vaslav Nijinsky, in various roles.

Ira Nowinski Collections
Biography: San Francisco photographer Ira Nowinski is represented in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Library of Congress, the California Historical Society, and the Museum of American Art in the Smithsonian Institution.  His work has been exhibited in galleries and museums throughout the United States and abroad.

Series 1: "Backstage at the Opera" Quantity: .3 linear foot (oversized) 

Inclusive dates: 1978-1982

Description: 109 black-and-white signed limited edition photographs providing a behind-the-scenes view of the operatic process and the various elements of opera production. Included are photographs of such internationally-acclaimed singers as Joan Sutherland, Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Birgit Nilsson, Montserrat Caballe, Leontyne Price, Leonie Rysanek, Renata Scotto, Giacomo Aragall, and Magda Olivero.  The collection also features photographs of celebrated opera designers (David Hockney), conductors (Richard Bonynge, Bruno Bartoletti, Julius Rudel), composers (Aribert Reimann), stage directors (Jean-Pierre Ponnelle, Lotfi Mansouri), and company administrators (Anthony Bliss, Kurt Herbert Adler). Chronicle Books donated these photographs by photographer Ira Nowinski on the occasion of the publisher's 1982 release, Backstage at the Opera.

Series 2: "The Ring Resplendent" Series  Quantity: .4 linear foot (oversized)

Inclusive dates: 1985

Description: Twenty-eight black-and-white matted photographs taken during the San Francisco Opera's internationally-acclaimed 1985 production of Richard Wagner's "Ring Cycle".  The 16"x20" archival prints include onstage performance shots, dressing room portraits, and candid backstage views of such opera luminaries as Eva Marton, Peter Hoffman, Gwyneth Jones, James Morris, Rene Kollo, and Thomas Stewart. Also pictured are conductor Edo de Waart, San Francisco Opera General Director Terence A. McEwen, and Production Director Nikolaus Lenhoff.

Series 3: Kurt Herbert Adler Series

Inclusive dates: [1943 - 1981?]

Description: Suite of color photographs of Kurt Herbert Adler and major San Francisco Opera performers and productions exhibited by SF PALM in 1989 at the San Francisco Opera House.

Series 4: San Francisco Opera Series  Quantity: .5 linear foot

Description: 30 16"x20" archival prints of performances by the San Francisco Opera.  Included in this suite are such renowned singers as Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Shirley Verrett, Birgit Nilsson, and Leonie Rysanek.
Ida O'Day (1880-1986) Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1885-1974
Biography: Ida O'Day's career began on the vaudeville stage where she was a singer, imitator, and banjo player on the national Orpheum circuit.  She then appeared in leading acting roles throughout the country, changing her name to "Ann O'Day".  She married Stanford alumnus and major donor Roscoe Maples and settled in Palo Alto.  
Description: Ida O'Day's personal collection, documenting her life and career.  Includescontracts, correspondence, fan letters, photographs, press clippings, programs, and audiotapes of herself looking back at her stage career in 1977 and from her 103rd birthday celebration.
Serge Oukrainsky Papers Quantity: 40 linear feet
Inclusive dates: ca. 1916-64 (much undated material)
Biography: Russian-born dancer, teacher and choreographerwho partnered Anna Pavlova.  Serge Oukrainsky (1886-1972) established with Andreas Pavley the Pavley-Oukrainsky Ballet, the official ballet of the Chicago Grand Opera. He became ballet master of the San Francisco Opera Ballet and staged ballets for symphonic concerts at the Hollywood Bowl.
Description: Biographical information, correspondence, Pavley-Oukrainsky Ballet Company financial and artistic records, photographs (some autographed), press clippings, programs, manuscripts, his autobiography My Life in Ballet, sketches, and a great many costumes.   
Carl Palangi / Gualtiero Bartalini Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Biography: Bartalini was an actor, singer, dancer and mime who moved from Italy to San Francisco and became the teacher of Carl Palangi.  Palangi made his debut in 1953 with the San Francisco Pops and performed in operas, operettas and with several orchestras in the West and Europe.
Description: Contains programs, publicity, and numerous photographs of the two performers careers.
Klarna Pinska (1902?-  ) Papers Quantity: 2 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1927-1985
Biography: Klarna Pinska was a protegee of dance pioneer Ruth St. Denis. Dancer, choreographer, designer, director, and teacher associated with the Denishawn School of Modern Dance. In later years she recreated a St. Denis technique, which she called "soaring", and taught throughout California.  She was associated with North Beach Anti-Fascist Players during World War II, and with Xoregos Dance Company in the 1970s.
Description: Programs, photographs, manuscripts, correspondence, interviews, clippings, costumes and artifacts, relating to her artistic career and political activity.

Lois Rather (1905- ) Collection Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1870s-1970s
Biography: Bay Area theatre historian who in 1935 served as research supervisor of the Works Progress Administration's Federal Theatre in San Francisco, where she compiled a history of local Chinese theatre, and published Toward a Living Theater, about the San Francisco Federal Theater Project.  In the 1940s she continued her theatre research and published articles in the California Historical Society's Quarterly.  She became an elementary school teacher in 1942, and continued to teach for twenty-seven years, while she wrote at least eight yet-unpublished novels and essays.  In 1970 began the private Rather Press with her husband, Clif, which published 28 hardcover books.  After her husband's death in 1987, she continued their printing work with the Rather Press Addenda.
Description: Personal archives on the history of the San Francisco Stage, featuring artifacts, correspondence, published and unpublished manuscripts, photographs, books, broadsides, song sheets, a collection of early playscripts, Chinese theatre memorabilia, and administrative files from the Federal Theatre project of the Works Progress Administration.
Bari Rolfe Mime and Theatre Collection Quantity: 15 linear feet
Description: Materials on children's theatre, including scripts, school curriculum materials, comic strips, flyers, books, and artifacts. 

Margret Roma and Clarence Ricklefs Papers Quantity: 7 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1907-1995

Biography: Born in Switzerland, Margrit Roma became a stage actress in Germany and then fled to France when Hitler came into power. In 1966 she and her husband Clarence Ricklefs moved to San Francisco and formed the New Shakespeare Company. 

Description: Collection includes photographs, playscripts, correspondence, publicity materials, clippings documenting Roma's life as an actress and her work with Ricklefs and the New Shakespeare Company.


Janice Ross Papers Quantity: 26 linear feet
Inclusive Dates: 1974-2004
Biography: Janice Ross is an author, dance critic, scholar and a Professor in the Department of Theatre and Performance Studies at Stanford University. She was the dance critic for the Oakland Tribune for ten years, is the author of four books, her essays have been published in numerous anthologies and she is the recipient of Guggenheim and a Fulbright Fellowships.
Description: Contains Ross' clippings, drafts, commentaries and her subject and research files which may include programs, handwritten notes, photographs, and / or correspondence.
Frances Saville (1865-1936) Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Biography: Operatic soprano who was born and died in San Francisco but spent most of her career outside California, performing in the world's great opera houses.
Description: This collection was given by Saville's niece, Edith Alttman, and includes memorabilia such as an extensive set of press clippings, a series of photographs, and Saville's own diary, in which she meticulously maintained a listing of her itinerary and repertoire.
Ron Scherl Collection Quantity: 16 linear feet
Description: Photographic images of the San Francisco Opera, American Conservatory Theatre, and the San Francisco Symphony.
See also Robert Watt Miller San Francisco Opera Archives, and San Francisco Symphony Archives.
Vincent Silk Papers Quantity: 9.3 linear feet
Biography: Vaudevillean performer master of ceremonies, active in AGMA and the San Francisco Press Club
Calvin Simmons (1950-1982) Collection Quantity: 1 linear foot
Biography: Noted conductor and musical director of the Oakland Symphony.
Description: Programs, brochures, articles about Simmons, photographs, sound recordings, memorials and letters to Louise McTernan, early music teacher of Simmons.
Lola Davis Simpson Papers
Inclusive dates: [1900- 1930]
Biography: An avid San Francisco theatre-goer.
Description: Folio albums featuring playbills, original photographs of performers, and more than 103 signatures and autographed letters.  The autographs include those of such performers as Maude Adams, Ethel Barrymore, Otis Skinner, Nellie Melba, and Ignace Paderewski. The photographs include originals by Arnold Genthe, one of America's leading portrait photographers.
Lenwood Sloan (1948- ) Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1975-1980
Biography: Dancer, director, choreographer, dance historian.
Description: Includes biographical materials., working papers, drawings, photographs, programs, press clippings,  correspondence, and promotional materials primarily for his signature choreographic works 100 Years of Minstrelsy and Three Black and Three White Refined Jubilee Minstrels-An American Documentary.


Michael Smuin Family Papers Quantity: 12.5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1933-2004
Biography: American ballet dancer and award-winning choreographer. Smuin danced with American Ballet Theatre and San Francisco Ballet where he also served as Co-Artistic Director. He choreographed numerous ballets and many film, stage, and television productions.  In 1994, he founded his own company, Smuin Ballet.
Description: The collection includes personal correspondence, publicity and business operations of the San Francisco Ballet and the Smuin Ballet, programs, video recordings, clippings, photograph and memorabilia. Also includes materials from Smuin's parents, brother, son and wife Paul Tracy.

Antonio Sotomayor Papers
Description: Over 100 original drawings by Antonio Sotomayor of performing arts personalities.
Debra Sowell Papers
Manuscript for her book on the Christensen brothers
Stephen Steinberg Papers Quantity: 5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1976-1991
Biography: Dance scholar, historian, film maker and program coordinator for the San Francisco Performing Arts Library & Museum.
Description: Manuscripts, video footage, documentation for his film projects, That's Beach Blanket BabylonLew Christesen: The Triumph of American DanceABT 50th Anniversary Gala and Nijinska: A Legend in Dance.

Stine, Isabel. Scrapbook.
Biography: An ardent San Francisco philanthropist who devoted most of her energies during the 1920s towards helping Gaetano Merola establish the San Francisco Opera.
Description: Includes correspondence to and from Merola; in-depth financial records from the Opera's early years; press clippings; historical photographs.

Muriel Stuart (1903-1991) Papers Quantity: 1.5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1916-
Biography: One of America's leading dance teachers, herself a student of Anna Pavlova, who served on the faculty of the School of American Ballet for over thirty-five years.
Description: Correspondence, programs, and promotional pieces, printed matter on Stuart's career andphotographic images of Stuart as a dancer with the Pavlova Company and dozens of signedphotographs of her contemporaries in dance, opera and the related arts, including such luminaries as Lincoln Kirstein, Anna Pavlova, and Charles Chaplin.


Conrad Susa Papers Quantity: 120 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1935-2013
Biography: Conrad Susa was an award winning composer, serving as the Musical Director for several prominent companies such as the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego. His diverse works included operas, chorale compositions, and music for theatrical productions. Along his active work as a composer, Susa was also a teacher, working with the San Francisco Conservatory of Music from 1988 unitl his death.
Description: Correspondence, working documents, libretti, press clippings, photographic materials, programs, promotional materials, scrapbooks, sheet music, sound recordings, and transcripts.


Annette Trubowitsch / Philburn Friedman Papers
Letters, photographs from stage manager Philburn Friedman who worked on many of Bob Fosse's shows and the material gathered by his sister Annette Trubowitsch for her book about him.

Gastone Usigli (1897-1956) Papers Quantity: 1.5 linear feet

Inclusive dates: 1920-1956
Biography:  Italian born composer, conductor and pianist who was active in the San Francisco musical scene from the 1930s to1950s leading such orchestra's as the WPA orchestra and the SF Chamber Symphony.
Description:  Contains photos and snapshots of Usigli and groups with which he was associated as well as recordings, clippings and original and photographed scores of Mr. Usigli's compositions.
Valerga Papers Quantity: 13.3 linear feet
History/Biography: San Francisco performers
Description: Personal collection from the Valerga family, including costumes, photographs, letters, programs, libretti, scores, scrapbooks.  Many of the programs are from the Tivoli Opera House.  Adelina Patti and Alice Nielsen are among the noted performers who also feature in this collection.
William Van den Burg (1901-1992) Papers Quantity: 1 linear ft.
Inclusive dates: 1916-1992
Biography: Dutch-born and trained conductor and cellist who came to the United Statesat the age of 24.  Served as principal cellist of the Philadelphia Orchestra, associate conductor and principal cellist of the San Francisco Symphony under Pierre Monteux and assistant conductor and principal cellist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
Description: Programs, photographs, reviews, and letters from Yehudi Menuhin and Leopold Stokowski.
Jocelyn Vollmar Papers Quantity: 1 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1944-2006
Biography: Prima ballerina with the San Francisco Ballet from 1956-1972 who appeared in the original full-length American premiers of Coppelia, Swan Lake and The Nutcracker.  She also performed with New York City Ballet, the American Ballet Theatre and the Metropolitan Opera.
Description: Programs, photographs, press materials.  Also clippings of reviews of Vollmar's performances throughout her career, primarily from San Francisco newspapers, but also extensive clippings from her years in Australia and New Zealand, as well as reviews of world tours.  A representative sampling of SF Ballet programs.
Max Waldman Photo Collection
Photos of Waldman's dance and theater photography
Joyce Lancaster Wilson Papers
Photos by Minor White and others of the Interplayers

MP+D holds the official records of many of the Bay Area's most important established performing arts organizations including the San Francisco Ballet, theSan Francisco Opera and Ethnic Dance Festival.   
California Arts Commission Collection Quantity: 13.6 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1963-1990.
Description: Annual reports, grant projects, directories, surveys, reports, clippings, chronology, application information, correspondence, policies, newsletters, brochures, evaluations, program summaries, studies, budgets, chronicle files, archive files, and Oakland Symphony files. Also includes applications for dance grants for 1985-86. Although these applications are intended primarily to determine C. A. C. funding, each application also contains a wealth of historical information.  Applications typically include reviews, photographs, budget information, performance statistics, company personnel, etc. 
Ethnic Dance Festival Records Quantity: 18 linear feet
Dates: 1978-
History: In 1978 San Francisco became the first city in the United States to sponsor an ethnic dance festival. Over the years, the festival has been seen by more than 175,00 people.
Description: Minutes, correspondence, audition evaluations, contracts, publicity, press materials , programs, photographs, and video tapes.


Fantasy Records Publicity Files Quantity: 68 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1949-2006
History: Fantasy Records was a pioneering jazz label founded in 1949 by brothers Max and Sol Weiss. Fantasy’s artists included homegrown greats such as Dave Brubeck, Vince Guaraldi and Creedence Clearwater Revival, while its acquired catalog contained legends such as Miles Davis, Thelonius Monk, John Coltrane, Ella Fitzgerald and many others.
Description: Administrative files, biographies, photographs, press releases, press clippings, and correspondence.

Lamplighters Music Theatre Archives Quantity: 10.5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1952 - present
History: The Bay Area's leading presenter of Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera for over forty years, [...more].  
Description: Repository of chronological production files featuring playbills, press releases, and clippings; an extensive photographic file of over 2,000 photographs; and 38 transcribed interviews conducted on the occasion of the Lamplighters' twenty-fifth anniversary.
Loring Club Archives Quantity: 7.5 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1877-1992
History: Male singing club founded in 1876 which gave concerts and promoted aspiring male singers, composers and instrumentalists in San Francisco for 114 years.
Description: Consists of photographs, playbills, programs, and scrapbooks, with connections to many notable musicians such as Joseph Redding and to other SF cultural organizations including the Bohemian Grove.
Robert Watt Miller San Francisco Opera Archives Quantity: 400 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1922-
Description: Administrative files, agent/artist files, general director's files, programs, photographs, press releases, scrapbooks, ledgers, broadcast files, and accounting records.
Noh Oratorio Society Archives Quantity: 3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1981-90
History: The Noh Oratorio Society made literature a lively art through public performance involving poetry, music, speech, and drama.  The Society produced works from all periods, in settings appropriate to the original material and founded on careful scholarship.  Musical and theatrical elements were often employed in the manner of oratorio and staged readings.  Amateurs worked with professionals from other local arts groups in workshops and performances, making material which is otherwise academic or obscure a matter of lively interest to the general public.
Description: The collection includes flyers, newsletters (original mock-ups), notes, color and black-and-white photographs, press clippings, press releases, production files, production resources, programs, radio spot announcements, resumes, reviews, and scores.
Oakland Symphony Archives  
Inclusive dates: 1933-89
Description: flyers, scrapbooks- clippings. press releases, programs,
One Act Theater Archives Quantity: .5 linear foot
Inclusive dates: 1979-88
Biography: Founded in Berkeley in 1976, the One Act Theater was a repertory ensemble devoted exclusively to one-act plays.
Description: Institutional records, including flyers, newsletters, photographs (including performance and publicity shots), press clippings, press releases, programs, including material documenting their popular lunchtime theater productions.
Pickle Family Circus Archive
Inclusive dates: 1975-
History: Pickle Family Circus is a unique non-profit circus group in San Francisco, styled in the European tradition, under the open sky and close to the crowd.  The performers are professionally trained actors, dancers, gymnasts, and musicians working in an interdisciplinary format. 
Description: The collection includes brochures, flyers, photographs, press clippings, and press kits. 

Rhoda Haas Goldman Stern Grove Festival Archives Quantity: 25 linear ft.
Inclusive dates: 1970-
History: Since 1932 the Stern Grove Midsummer Music Festival has been the longest continuously operating free outdoor music series in the United States presenting performances by artists and companies such as Isaac Stern, Jan Peerce, Licia Albanese, Mary Costa, Michael Tilson Thomas, the San Francisco Ballet, Opera and Symphony.
Description: Programs, photographs, contracts, minutes, administrative papers, press books and video tapes.


San Francisco Ballet Archives Quantity: 300 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1933 - present
History: The official records of the San Francisco Ballet, America's oldest ballet company, and the largest dance company outside of New York.  Through the years, San Francisco Ballet has furnished American dance with a number of historic firsts. SFB was the first American company to stage a complete Swan Lake, and the first company to stage a complete version of the Nutcracker in this country.   SFB was the first American ballet company to tour the Far East, the first to present a full-length American ballet on the PBS series Dance in America, and the first dance company in America to have a building built specifically for its use. The San Francisco Ballet School has provided the training for such dancers as Oona White, Harold Lang, Cynthia Gregory, and Michael Smuin.
Description: Programs, press clippings, press releases, press kits, photographs, posters, costume and set designs, and various administrative and public relations files, films and videos (including footage of SFB's historic Far East tour in 1957) which document the history of the dancers and the company.
Some files are restricted
San Francisco Boys' Chorus Collection Quantity: 3.3 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1956-present
Biography: One of the Bay Area's oldest choral groups
Description: The collection includes brochures, correspondence, newsletters, photographs, posters, 16-track audio tapes, records, and films.
San Francisco Civic Chorale Archives Quantity: 1.4 linear feet
Inclusive dates: 1965-present
Description: Includes correspondence, flyers, newsletters, rosters, photographs, press releases, programs, advisory board information, artistic council materials, scholarship information, and tour documentation.

San Francisco Municipal Chorus Archives Quantity: 3.3
Inclusive dates: 1924-65
Description: Includes flyers, newsletters, press clippings, programs, a scrapbook, and administrative materials such as applications for membership, attendance records, executive committee meeting minutes, financial materials, and treasurer's reports.   
San Francisco Musical Club Archives


San Francisco Opera Guild Archives Quantity: 3.7 linear feet
Rhoda Haas Goldman Stern Grove Festival Archives Quantity: 25 linear ft.
Inclusive dates: 1970-
History: Since 1932 the Stern Grove Midsummer Music Festival has been the longest continuously operating free outdoor music series in the United States presenting performances by artists and companies such as Isaac Stern, Jan Peerce, Licia Albanese, Mary Costa, Michael Tilson Thomas, the San Francisco Ballet, Opera and Symphony.
Description: Programs, photographs, contracts, minutes, administrative papers, press books and video tapes.