Scope and arrangement
The Joseph Boromé Research and Writings on Opera consist primarily of Boromé's correspondence, research materials, and manuscript drafts of published and unpublished writings on opera and related topics in music history. Among the files in the Opera and Related Subjects series is material on the nineteenth century impresarios Max Maretzek and Fernandino Palmo, as well as Boromé's graduate school thesis on the history of opera presentation in New York City. Also contained in this series are files with background material and manuscripts for program notes written by Boromé during the 1960s for various operas staged by the American Opera Society (the folder on The Mother of Us All includes some letters from its composer, Virgil Thomson).
The largest portion of the collection, however, documents Boromé's efforts to do research for a proposed biography of the composer, Vincenzo Bellini, as well as to find a potential publisher. Included are several manuscript drafts of what appear to be sections of the biography, as well as research and writings on individual Bellini operas. While English predominates throughout the collection, there is a significant amount of correspondence and research materials in Italian, as well as some items in French, German, Russian, and Spanish. Although the collection contains no personal material on Boromé, it does include information that may be of interest to researchers studying the bel canto revival of the mid-twentieth century, as well as the economic aspects of nineteenth century opera performance history.
The Joseph Boromé research and writings on opera is arranged in two series:
- 1942 - 19752 boxes
The Opera and Related Subjects series primarily contains materials pertaining to nineteenth century opera, including Boromé's master's thesis, as well as files on Max Maretzek and Fernandino Palmo. Also of note is an early term paper of Boromé's and class notes which may have formed the basis of the thesis. This series also includes files with correspondence, research materials, and manuscripts compiled in writing program notes on various operas, a proposed article on the Bolshoi Opera, and a review essay on performances attended by Boromé during a trip to Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. Among the items of interest is an exchange of correspondence between Boromé and Virgil Thomson, which concerns Boromé's program notes for a production of the Virgil Thomson - Gertrude Stein opera, The Mother of Us All, and includes four letters from the composer, as well as his corrections to Boromé's manuscript.
- 1931 - 1976
The Vincenzo Bellini Biography series is mainly comprised of correspondence, research materials, and manuscript drafts for a proposed book about the composer. Notable correspondents include Sacheverell Sitwell and Walter Toscanini. Also included are separate files with similar materials on individual Bellini operas. Boromé published an article on Beatrice di Tenda and wrote program notes for a production of I Capuleti e I Montecchi.