Scope and arrangement
The Martin Worman papers, the bulk of which dates from 1960-1993, document Worman's theatrical and academic careers, the history of the Cockettes, drag, travesty theatre, and San Francisco in the early 1970s. The extensive production files relate to the Cockettes and Worman's other theatrical endeavors, as writer, actor and director, while the academic files chronicle his activities as student, instructor and scholar. A small amount of personal papers in the collection survey his childhood, youth, military career and adult life. The collection contains correspondence, biographical materials, writings, military and legal documents, scripts, sheet music, publicity materials, programs, photographs, research materials, and recordings of performances, rehearsals and demos of songs. Notable is Worman's research for his dissertation on the Cockettes, which includes 80 taped interviews with former Cockettes among them Sylvester, Goldie Glitters, Kreemah Ritz and John Rothermell . The collection also includes transcripts of these interviews along with draft versions of Worman's dissertation.
The Martin Worman papers are arranged in four series:
This series contains personal correspondence and candid photographs; biographies, interviews and obituary notices for Worman; publications edited by Worman while he was in high school, college and the military; notes, notebooks, lyrics and verses.This series also includes official documentation of Worman's military service and appointment books.
This series contains files pertaining to productions Worman appeared in, directed, wrote, assistant directed or worked on in any capacity, from the early 1970s thorough the early 1990s.The production files include such items as scripts, sheet music, lyric sheets, notes, outlines and background research; programs, agreements, photographs, correspondence; and clippings, flyers, posters and other publicity materials. Audio tapes of performances and rehearsals are also included. The productions covered most extensively are Crimes Against Nature, The Dear Love of Comrades and Prairie Solitaire. Includes materials collected by Robert Croonquist on Reno Besides Myself, written and performed by Reno, dedicated to Worman's memory.
This series consists of materials pertaining to the psychedelic drag theatre group, The Cockettes, who performed primarily in San Francisco from 1970-1972. This series includes productions files on many of the Cockettes San Francisco shows, their New York engagement and their film, Tricia's Wedding. These include scripts, sheet music, lyrics and notes; photographs; posters and clippings; and audio tapes of live performances. The photographs (originals, photocopies and slides) include production and publicity shots and candid images of the Cockettes on stage and off.
Also included are items Worman collected for his research on the Cockettes, such as correspondence, notes, files on solo performances by various Cockettes, including disco star Sylvester; as well as Worman's dissertations and essays. The extensive interviews with the other Cockettes which Worman conducted are also included, the audio tapes as well as typed transcripts of many of them. After Worman's death in 1993, his companion, Robert Croonquist continued collecting materials on The Cockettes, including information on Cockettes reunions; and publicity materials, correspondence and a VHS copy of Bill Weber and David Weissman's 2002 documentary, The Cockettes and Sweet Pam Tent's book, Midnight at the Palace: My Life as a Fabulous Cockette.
This series consists of materials pertaining to Worman's academic career. Included are materials on his career at New York University, The University of Wisconsin-Madison and Antioch College, such as papers by Worman; syllabi, reading lists and course proposals; evaluations, correspondence, and administrative records; materials related to workshops, panels, lectures (including Worman in his personal as "Dr. Queen"); notes and notebooks; and submissions to a collection of essays he was editing when he died, Gay Theater and Performance in the United States. For his research on drag performance, Worman attended various gay events and pageants, many of which he audio-taped with his own commentary, there are also photographs of and programs for these events. Also included is a series of lectures Worman recorded, from the NYU course, Experimental Performance Since 1960, taught by Worman's mentor at NYU, Richard Schechner, the noted director, author, teacher and pioneer in the performance studies movement.