Scope and arrangement
The Charles Schwartz Papers document the three parts of Schwartz's career: his activities as a producer of concerts of contemporary music and jazz with his Composers' Showcase series; as a published biographer of George Gershwin and Cole Porter; and as a prolific composer whose music was performed and recorded by important musicians. Composers' Showcase is documented by correspondence, business papers, clippings, concert programs, publicity materials and photographs of performances and participating musicians. The collection contains Schwartz's Gershwin and Porter books in manuscripts and proofs, as well as papers, notes, articles and photographs used in his research process. These include copies of Gershwin and Porter music manuscripts and correspondence, originals of which are in other repositories. Schwartz's own music scores comprise over half the volume of the collection and include music composed from the early 1940s until the mid-1990s. The clippings and concert programs document the performance and critical reception of Schwartz's music, and other papers document the business and logistics of performing and recording it.
The Charles Schwartz papers are arranged in four series:
- 1898-1998 and undated
This series contains professional papers documenting the history of Schwartz's Composers' Showcase concert series; his compositions and associated recordings and performances; and Schwartz's writings and the research that went into them. The Composers' Showcase sub-series contains correspondence, business papers and fundraising information. Sub-series 2 contains information on some of Schwartz's music and the business of performing and recording it. Sub-series 3 contains manuscripts of his books in progress and associated research documentation, including reproductions of George Gershwin music manuscripts. Sub-series 4 contains general correspondence and concert programs.
- 1957-1997 and undated
The majority of the photographs in this series document the Composers' Showcase concert series. These include publicity and performance photographs of participating artists, including Leonard Bernstein, Duke Ellington, Lotte Lenya, John Cage, Cab Calloway, Jon Hendricks, Merce Cunningham, Aaron Copland, Eubie Blake and others. Other photographs include images used in Schwartz's Gershwin biography, photos taken during the recording of Professor Jive (featuring Clark Terry), and portraits and candid photographs of Schwartz. General photographs include images of Freddie Hubbard, Sun Ra and Henry Cowell. Oversized photographs are in Series IV.
- 1943-ca. 1995 and undated
Scores for probably all of Schwartz's music are in this series, from his-post college days to his final works in the 1990s. Most of the music from ca. 1970 onward is not dated, but files in Series I, sub-series 2 can date some of them. Works that were performed have parts as well as full scores. These include 5 Pieces For 4 Trumpets, American Symphony, Mother, Mother, Professor Jive, Rhymes And Fables, Riding High and Solo Brothers. Many pieces have early sketches as well as final scores. The two boxes of untitled sketches probably contain early versions of pieces in this series.
This series contains clippings and articles used in researching George Gershwin and publicity material for the Gershwin biography; promotional posters for Composers' Showcase concerts; and photographs used in researching the Gershwin and Porter biographies.