University of North Carolina: Grant to Libraries Will Provide Access to Rare Spanish, Portuguese and Catalan Dramas. “The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries has received a grant of $12,100 from the Pine Tree Foundation of New York. The grant will help the Library catalog and digitize a vast collection of rare Spanish, Portuguese and Catalan dramas. The collection is particularly significant because it contains approximately 2,000 ‘comedias sueltas,’ according to Elizabeth Ott, Frank Borden Hanes Curator of Rare Books at the Wilson Special Collections Library. Comedias sueltas are pamphlet-length plays printed between 1674 and 1834, Spain’s golden age of drama.”
New to me – an archive of science plays. From the About page: “The science play catalogue grew from years of being asked by colleagues for a list of my favorite science play titles. In 2007, I authored an article for Southern Theater magazine about science plays, which included a compilation of my top twenty science plays. It was at that time I began collecting science play titles in earnest. In 2015, CNU awarded me a sabbatical to support my research and cataloguing of these plays…. Current students in the Science on the Stage class have also contributed to the website by creating blog posts of individual plays as in-class assignments.”
Arizona State University: ASU Child Drama Collection extends its reach to scholars. “Arizona State University’s Child Drama Collection is the largest, most utilized and internationally renowned youth-theater repository in the world, according to university officials. It lures scholars, playwrights, performers and students from around the world to study its costumes, scripts, designs and ephemera — but the reach for one of its most prized portions has been limited to those who could journey to Hayden Library in Tempe. By the end of the year, however, a listing of the contents of the Irene Corey Collection will become accessible to everyone online.”
Los Angeles Times: Shakespeare died 401 years ago, but original scripts from his era live on in a new digital archive. “Christopher Marlowe, Thomas Middleton and Thomas Nashe — despite the best efforts of high school and college English teachers — remain also-rans compared with William Shakespeare, whose fame keeps growing…. On Sunday, the Folger Shakespeare Library — the august institution based in Washington, D.C., that includes a research institute as well as a celebrated theater — will try again to change this. Last year, on the widely celebrated 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, the library offered a digital archive of the playwright’s work. This year, on the 401st, the Folger will open a Digital Anthology of Early English Drama, which makes original scripts and visual images from 40 plays available to anyone with Internet access.” The site is live now.
A new online archive provides information on contemporary Spanish playwrights. “Contexto Teatral is a live archive of new plays by contemporary Spanish playwrights. As we expect the project to grow and include an increasing number of authors, Contexto Teatral already has over 350 plays by nearly 100 playwrights archived, most of them from Spain, but with a number of authors born abroad, mainly in Latin America.”
Wow, this is a new one on me. A retired music teacher has created a video archive of musical numbers from high school plays. “Now former Bristol students can relive their high school memories thanks to Ken Ferris, retired music teacher. Ferris has compiled an online video archive of songs from BEHS musicals from 1992 to 2002.” Obviously I don’t think you all went to Bristol, but I’m including it here because it’s so unusual. This would be a wonderful project for high school students taking classes on video production – archiving is important!
Underway: a project to digitize Orson Welles’ old radio shows. “An [Indiana University]-led preservation and digitization project, titled ‘Orson Welles on the Air,’ will reveal the truth: Original lacquer discs containing 14 of the broadcasts, as well as other supposedly lost recordings, had been secured by Indiana University Libraries’ Lilly Library, one of the nation’s premier rare book and special collection libraries.”