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Madrigal Singers records

Abstract

Title:
Madrigal Singers records
Author/Creator:
Madrigal Singers
Size:
2.50 linear feet
Inclusive dates:
1958-1974
Collection Area:
Special Collections in Performing Arts
Repository:
Special Collections in Performing Arts, Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library, University of Maryland, Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, College Park, MD 20742. Tel: 301-405-9220, Fax: 301-314-7170, Email: vnovara@umd.edu
Abstract:

The Madrigal Singers were organized in 1958 by Rose Marie Grentzer to perform vocal and instrumental music dating from the pre-Renaissance period to twentieth-century America. The group's records include photographs, programs, newspaper clippings, and contracts documenting the operation and performances of the Madrigal Singers.

Important Information for Users of the Collection

Restrictions:

This collection is open for research.

Preferred citation:

Madrigal Singers records, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1903.1/1649
Publication rights:

Materials from this collection must be used in the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library's Irving and Margery Morgan Lowens Special Collections Room, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. Please make an appointment with the curator.

Status:

This collection is PROCESSED.

Historical Note

In the fall of 1958, a group of musically-inclined students at the University of Maryland at College Park began gathering during the noon hour to sing madrigals for their own enjoyment. Madrigals are secular polyphonic songs with parts for four to six voices, usually having no accompaniment; the style developed in Europe during the Renaissance. In 1959, the group was officially recognized by the university and became known as the Madrigal Singers, under the direction of Rose Marie Grentzer, a professor of music and chairperson of the Music Education Division of the University of Maryland at College Park.

Due to the nature of the music, the group remained small over the years, ranging from twelve to twenty-two singers and musicians. The students, both undergraduates and graduates, came from various academic departments on campus. The Singers performed concerts of music from the Middle Ages up to the modern day, though the focus was always the Renaissance. They used Renaissance-period instruments and wore Renaissance costumes specially crafted by the Home Economics Department.

The Madrigal Singers performed locally and internationally. Local highlights included concerts at the White House, the headquarters of the Organization of American States, and the Folger Shakespeare Library. Performances were also held on the University of Maryland campus and at other schools, libraries, museums, and organizations, as well as at national meetings, such as the Music Educators National Conference. In the late 1960s and in 1970, the group gave several personal performances for the author Katherine Anne Porter.

The Madrigal Singers also sang on television and radio and made recordings for distribution to other countries. Beginning in 1959, the group performed each Christmas season on Baltimore, Maryland, television as the WBAL-TV Carollers.

Their success as a musical group reached its pinnacle in 1964 when they participated in a U.S. Cultural Presentations Program tour sponsored by the State Department. For fourteen weeks from February to May, the Madrigal Singers performed over ninety concerts in eleven countries in the Near East, North Africa, and the British Isles.

The Madrigal Singers appear to have disbanded sometime around 1974.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The records of the University of Maryland Madrigal Singers span the period 1958 to 1974; the bulk of the material dates from 1959 to 1970. The collection consists of correspondence, clippings, publicity, student lists, performance-related documents, sheet music, one recording, photographs, and memorabilia. The major topics covered include requests, plans, programs, and notes of appreciation for concerts, especially the State Department tour.

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

The papers of the Madrigal Singers were transferred to University Archives in July 1974 by Rose Marie Grentzer. The collection was transferred to Special Collections in Performing Arts in August 2010.

Processing Information

Processed by:

Originally processed: October 1974. Re-processed by: Patricia J. Rettig, April 1997.

Processing note:

Originally processed in 1974, the collection was re-organized in 1997. Duplicates were discarded. Paper clips and metal fasteners were removed and replaced with plastic clips. The materials were placed in acid-free folders and reboxed in acid-free boxes. Photographs and memorabilia were separated and moved to their respective storage locations within the department. Lastly, the guide was enhanced and reformatted.

Encoded by:

EAD markup created using EAD databse in Microsoft Access. Markup completed by Dan Schwartz, May 2006. Edited by Malissa Ruffner, December 2008.

Arrangement of Collection

This collection is organized as four series:

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1: Administrative Records, 1958-1974 (1.50 linear feet)

This series contains correspondence, student lists, schedules, programs, clippings, and publicity describing the performance history of the Madrigal Singers. Television- and radio-related documents, such as scripts and publicity, as well as costume information, sheet music, and a recording made for the English Teaching Forum are also included.

Important subjects documented are the groups performances at the White House, State Department, Organization of American States, and the Folger Library, as well as for WBAL-TV in Baltimore. Also included is information on the Madrigal Singers performance of Katherine Anne Porters French Song-Book for the author herself.

Frequent correspondents are Madrigal Singers director Rose Marie Grentzer; Don Peacock, the director of advertising and promotion at WBAL-TV; Bess Abell, the White House social secretary; Elizabeth Sadler, the editor of English Teaching Forum; and Wilson Elkins, the president of the University of Maryland.

The materials are arranged alphabetically by folder title, then chronologically by school year.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 1
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 2
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 3
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 4
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 5
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 6
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 7
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 8
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 9
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 10
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 11
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 12
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 13
Clippings and Publicity, 1959-1973 series 1box 1folder 14
Correspondence, 1959-1964 series 1box 1folder 15
Correspondence, 1959-1964 series 1box 1folder 16
Correspondence, 1959-1964 series 1box 1folder 17
Correspondence, 1959-1964 series 1box 1folder 18
Correspondence, 1959-1964 series 1box 1folder 19
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 1
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 2
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 3
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 4
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 5
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 6
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 7
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 8
Correspondence, 1964-1973 series 1box 2folder 9
Costumes, 1964 and undated series 1box 2folder 10
General Information on the Madrigal Singers, undated series 1box 2folder 11
Recording, 1969 series 1box 2folder 12
Sheet Music, 1963-1964 and undated series 1box 2folder 13
Student Lists, Schedules and Programs, 1958-1963 series 1box 2folder 14
Student Lists, Schedules and Programs, 1958-1963 series 1box 2folder 15
Student Lists, Schedules and Programs, 1958-1963 series 1box 2folder 16
Student Lists, Schedules and Programs, 1958-1963 series 1box 2folder 17
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 1
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 2
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 3
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 4
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 5
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 6
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 7
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 8
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 9
Student Lists, Schedules, and Programs, 1963-1974 series 1box 3folder 10
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 11
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 12
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 13
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 14
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 15
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 16
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 17
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 18
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 19
Television and Radio, 1959-1973 series 1box 3folder 20

Series 2: State Department Tour Records, 1961-1965 (1.00 linear foot)

The briefing, itineraries, correspondence, programs, and clippings in this series relate to the Madrigal Singers fourteen-week tour of the Near East, North Africa, and the British Isles. State Department briefings and fact sheets are included for each country the group toured. General information on the Madrigal Singers tour appears first in the series followed by information on specific countries visited, in chronological order by tour dates.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
ClippingsU. S., 1963-1964 series 2box 4folder 1
Cultural PresentationsReports, 1963-1964 series 2box 4folder 2
General Tour Correspondence, 1964 series 2box 4folder 3
Itineraries and General Tour Information, 1964 series 2box 4folder 4
Other Tour Publicity, 1963-1964 series 2box 4folder 5
Programs To Be Used On Tour, 1964 series 2box 4folder 6
Greece -- Briefing, 1963-1964 series 2box 4folder 7
Greece -- Clippings and Evaluations, 1964 series 2box 4folder 8
Greece -- Correspondence, 1964-1965 series 2box 4folder 9
Greece -- Gifts, 1964 series 2box 4folder 10
Greece -- Gifts, 1964 series 2box 4folder 11
Greece -- Programs, 1963-1964 series 2box 4folder 12
Turkey -- Briefings and Correspondence, 1963-1964 series 2box 5folder 1
Turkey -- Clippings and Evaluations, 1964 series 2box 5folder 2
Turkey -- Programs, 1964 series 2box 5folder 3
Iraq, 1963-1964 series 2box 5folder 4
Iran, 1962-1964 series 2box 5folder 5
United Arab Republic, 1964 series 2box 5folder 6
Jordan, 1963-1964 series 2box 5folder 7
Cyprus, 1962-1964 series 2box 5folder 8
Lebanon -- Briefings, 1961-1964 series 2box 5folder 9
Lebanon -- Clippings, 1964 series 2box 5folder 10
Lebanon -- Programs and Correspondence, 1964-1965 series 2box 5folder 11
Lebanon -- Television Program, 1964 series 2box 5folder 12
Morocco, 1963-1964 series 2box 5folder 13
Tunisia -- Briefings, Programs and Correspondence, 1962-1964 series 2box 5folder 14
Tunisia -- Clippings, 1964 series 2box 5folder 15
Great Britain -- Briefing and Programs, 1964 series 2box 5folder 16
Great Britain -- Correspondence and Clippings, 1964 series 2box 5folder 17
Ireland -- Bunratty Castle, 1964 series 2box 5folder 18
Ireland -- Clippings, 1964 series 2box 5folder 19
Ireland -- Correspondence, 1964 series 2box 5folder 20
Ireland -- Programs, 1964 series 2box 5folder 21

Series 3: Photographs, 1960s-1970s (6.00 linear feet)

This series includes nearly two hundred photographs of the Madrigal Singers. Most of the photos show the group in concert, along with some candid shots of group members. Local concerts pictured include those on the University of Maryland campus, at the White House, and at the Folger Library. Also featured are photographs of the group on tour, particularly their 1964 visit to Turkey and the United Arab Republic. These materials have been transferred to the photograph collection.

The box inventory for this series is not currently available online. Please refer to the series description above for a broad description of the materials or contact the department for more information.

Series 4: Memorabilia, 1964 (12 items)

The Madrigal Singers received several gifts from the countries they visited on their 1964 tour, including a dagger, a Koran, and a stringed instrument similar to a violin with its bow. This series also contains publicity posters from the tour, sketches for costumes, and fabric samples.

The box inventory for this series is not currently available online. Please refer to the series description above for a broad description of the materials or contact the department for more information.

Related Material

For other related archival and manuscript collections, please see the following subject guides.

Selected Search Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the University of Maryland Libraries' Catalog. Researchers desiring related materials about these topics, names, or places may search the Catalog using these headings.

Subjects

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