Scope and arrangement
Original designs help to form the bulk of this collection on Howard Bay's varied career as set designer and professor. The collection consists of designs from thirty-six productions, including technical drawings, painter's elevations, rough sketches, set renderings, light plots, detail drawings and preliminary drawings. Almost every play, musical, opera or project Bay worked on is represented. Bay also worked on numerous productions through various universities' theatre departments, often contributing to the formation and curriculum of their programs.
The remainder of the collection consists of correspondence, office files, published articles, clippings and programs providing production information. The photograph series is largely production related but does include some portraits and snapshots of Bay, including one with Donald Oenslager and Laurence Olivier. The collection also includes awards received by Bay for his contributions to various causes and the artistic craftsmanship of his work.
The Howard Bay designs and technical drawings are arranged in four series:
- 1939 - 1983, undated
The Original Designs series makes up the bulk of the collection. It includes initial pencil sketches and painted designs, which are separated into production designs and technical designs. The designs in the series span most of Bay's work from Broadway productions to his lesser-known college productions. This series includes the original designs for Carmen Jones (1943), Cry for Us All (1970), Man of La Mancha (1965), The Music Man (1957) and Showboat (1946).
This series includes correspondence with theater organizations, programs of committees attended, pamphlets of theatre productions at various Universities, articles written on Bay, Bay's own published pieces and newspaper clippings. Included among the files are the patent papers for a chair design by Bay.
The photographs series includes stage designs of productions, commercial displays, and publicity shots of Bay. Among the photographs are a group shot of Donald Oenslager & Laurence Olivier with Howard Bay among others. Also included are various prints from Up In Central Park the film with Vincent Price.
The awards series includes various acknowledgements received by Bay for his work and contribution to various causes. Among them is Bay's Donaldson Award for the 1944 - 1945 season.