Scope and arrangement
Processing of this collection was prompted by researchers looking for music from the Capitol Theater (opened in 1926 at Broadway and 51st Street, it was later renamed the Loews Cinerama and was demolished in 1968). The collection of music from that theatre was donated to the Music Library of the University of California at Los Angeles: http://www.oac.cdlib.org:28008/dynaweb/ead/ucla/music/capitol/ Unfortunately it was not possible to verify the details of the gift or when it might have been donated. Although the boxes in which this collection were stored were labeled “May 1976” no member of the library staff could recall how or when it was acquired, or from whom.
Determining the provenance of this collection from internal evidence has also proven to be very difficult. Though a small number of property stamps reveal information concerning previous owners of individual works, it is difficult to understand how this information creates a comprehensive picture. Whatever its immediate provenance, it becomes clear from these stamps that this collection has been gathered from many different sources. A list of owners derived from property stamps can be found at the end of the finding aid.
A majority of the music in this collection was composed and intended to be used as generic music accompanying silent films. Some works carry 19th century copyright dates and were probably used as accompaniment to staged dramatic presentations.
Some items which have been identified as having been associated with a particular film have been indexed separately. These includes the thematic cue sheet for the film A Woman from Moscow (folder 831).
Most of the music in this collection consists of parts, often accompanied with piano conductor scores. It is difficult to know if a complete set of parts is at hand, since there is rarely any indication of what constitutes a complete set of parts.