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Finding Aid for the Livingston Gearhart Papers, 1933-1997

Mus. Arc. 23.1

State University of New York at Buffalo. Music Library


112 Baird Hall
Buffalo, New York 14260-4750
United States
Phone: 716 645-2924
Fax: 716 645-3906
Email: musique@buffalo.edu
URL: http://library.buffalo.edu/music/

Finding aid prepared by John Bewley.
Finding aid encoded in EAD by John Bewley, April 2011.
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid prepared using DACS ( Describing Archives: A Content Standard ).

Please use the following URL when citing this document:
http://purl.org/net/findingaids/view?docId=ead/music/ubmu0023_1.xml

© 2011. State University of New York at Buffalo. All rights reserved.


Collection Overview

Title: Livingston Gearhart Papers, 1933-1997
Collection Number: Mus. Arc. 23.1
Creator: Gearhart, Livingston
Extent: 2 boxes (108 folders)
Language of Material: Collection material in English and French.
Repository: State University of New York at Buffalo. Music Library
Abstract: The collection of Livingston Gearhart Papers contains prose writings, vitae, correspondence, teaching materials, programs, and clippings.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

[Specified item], Livingston Gearhart Papers, 1933-1997, Music Library, The State University of New York at Buffalo.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Pamela Gearhart.

Terms of Access

Materials can be examined by qualified researchers in the Music Library during hours of operation during which Music Librarians are present. In order to insure access, researchers are advised to contact the Music Library in advance of visits.

Copyright

Copyright for the materials in the collection does not reside with the Music Library. Therefore, patrons wishing to publish any item, or part of an item from this collection for any purpose, are responsible for securing requisite permissions.

Processing Information

Processed by Kathryn M. Blough, 1999; re-processed as separate collection by John Bewley, 2011.

Accruals and Additions

No further accruals are expected to this collection.


Biographical Note

Livingston Gearhart was born in Buffalo, New York December 31, 1916. His mother was Lillian Hawley Gearhart, a pianist who had studied for a year under Theodor Leschetizky in Vienna. As a child Gearhart studied piano, oboe, violoncello, and sang in church choirs in Buffalo and New York City. He graduated from high school in East Orange, New Jersey in 1935. He entered Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia in 1935 as an oboe student of Marcel Tabuteau. In his second year he switched his major to study composition with Rosario Scalero and piano with Nadia Reisenberg.

Gearhart sailed to Paris aboard the Normandie in 1937. With generous support from a wealthy American expatriate, he was able to enroll at the Conservatoire Américain de Fontainebleau where he studied music theory and composition with Nadia Boulanger. He was awarded the school's 2nd prize (no first prize was awarded that year) in the Prix Stovall composition competition in 1937. While in Paris he also met Igor Stravinsky, Darius Milhaud, Robert Casadesus, pianist Isidore Philipp, and his future wife and duo-piano partner, Virginia Clotfelter. He and Virginia performed their debut in Paris February 1, 1939 at the Salle Chopin. They received good reviews and were then able to give concerts in other French and Swiss locations until the conditions of World War II caused them to return to the United States.

Virginia Clotfelter adopted the professional name Morley and married Gearhart February 28, 1940 in New York City. They worked at numerous venues, including the Hotel Brevoort and the club, Ruban Bleu, both operated by Herbert Jacoby. The pair spent the summers of 1942 and 1943 as Artists-in-Residence at Morley's alma mater, Mills College in Oakland, California. While there Gearhart was able to study composition with Darius Milhaud. The Budapest String Quartet was also in residence at Mills College during those years and Gearhart and Morley formed friendships with quartet members Alexander and Mischa Schneider. The Morley Gearhart duo was very successful, performing works by Milhaud, Norman Dello Joio, David Diamond, and Stravinsky's Concerto per due pianoforte soli.

The duo received contracts with Columbia Concerts and the Fred Waring Show that extended from 1943-1954. During 1941 to 1954, the two-piano team of Morley and Gearhart performed over 2000 concerts throughout the US and Canada in addition to recording for Columbia Masterworks and Decca Records. Included among the many concert dates was a performance by the duo at the White House for President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953. During this period Gearhart also worked as a staff arranger for the Fred Waring Show.

A two-CD retrospective released in 2001, Morley and Gearhart Rediscovered by Ivory Classics, features 22 of Gearhart's two-piano arrangements. Some of these arrangements survive at Penn State in their collection, Fred Waring's America. In many cases Gearhart never fully wrote out his part of a duo so no written arrangement survives.

Livingston Gearhart's output contains several collections written for pedagogical purposes. The first of Gearhart's these works to be published was Clarinet Sessions in 1945. That was followed by similar collections for trumpet, violin, flute, and duos. Gearhart's entire compositional and arranging output includes 400-500 works (counting individual works within the collections).

Gearhart returned to Buffalo in 1955 and was appointed to the faculty of the music department at the University of Buffalo. After a divorce from Virginia Morley, he married violinist and conductor Pamela Gerhart (not a misspelling) in 1955. He taught various courses in keyboard, theory, and orchestration until his retirement in 1985.

Livingston Gearhart had four children: Paul, born to Virginia Morley Gearhart; Kim, Martha, and Fritz, born to Pamela Gearhart. Livingston Gearhart died in Buffalo at the age of 79 on July 14, 1996.


Scope and Content Note

The collection contains the prose writings of Livingston Gearhart along with correspondence received by him, materials he compiled for teaching classes, programs, and clippings. The nature of some of the writings suggests that Gearhart may have been interested in writing a memoir. The subjects of these writings include his studies at Curtis Institute of Music in 1935, his studies with Nadia Boulanger in 1937-1939, summaries of different stages of his career and life, and assessments of music education at the college level. More of his thoughts about Nadia Boulanger can be found in his lecture notes for the memorial concert he organized in 1980 (Series VI.). His writings about other people he met include portraits of his mother, Lillian Hawley Gearhart, Igor Stravinsky, Leonard Bernstein, Robert Casadesus, Fred Waring, Darius Milhaud, and Béla Bartók. Other writings with advice about performing were written to one or more of his children. The teaching materials include statements that express much of his philosophy about teaching the practical materials of music from the standpoint of a successful working professional.

Correspondence in the collection includes letters by Louise Talma, Peggy Glanville-Hicks, David Diamond, Richard Arnell, Norman Dello Joio, Vittorio Rieti, Alexandre Tansman, and Marcel Tabuteau. There is a relatively small number of programs and clippings included with the collection but they range from a 1933 performance with his mother through his own memorial concert.



Container List

Box Folder Contents
1 1 Curriculum vitae, 1967-1978
8 items

Includes a partial works list with dates.

1 2 Obituaries and memorial service, 1996
9 items

Includes obituaries, death notices, and program of memorial concert.

II. A    Biographical writings, 1977-1993
Folders 3-12
Arranged alphabetically by folder title which has been either transcribed from a title on the item or from a first line of text.
Box Folder Contents
1 3
Curtis memories, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about Curtis Institute of Music in 1935.

1 4
Dry bones, undated
1 item (3 leaves)

Manuscript about working in New York City 1940-1942 and the origination of his arrangement of the tune, Dry bones, which he first heard performed by the Delta Rhythm Boys.

1 5
From College Street in Bflo (ca. 1925-7)..., undated
1 item (2 leaves)

Manuscript recollection of train whistles.

1 6
In 1940, all nightclub entertainers were required to ..., undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about working in New York City and people encountered, including club owner Herbert Jacoby, singer Elsie Houston, and harpist Caspar Reardon.

1 7
In East Orange c. 1930 ... , undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript recollection of hearing his mother and Lili Balint play piano.

1 8
Memories, in high school ... , undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about his teenage years.

1 9
It's only in my sixties ... , undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about his parents and upbringing in Buffalo.

1 10
Memories (1945-46), undated
1 item (3 leaves)

Typescript about family life during 1945-46.

1 11
A ship called the Normandie was special to me ... , undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about the ship on which he sailed to France.

1 12
When I was a kid, Country Gardens was a popular piano solo, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about folk songs as musical material, with mention of Percy Grainger.

II. B    Musical topics, 1977-1993
Folders 13-31
Arranged alphabetically by folder title which has been either transcribed from a title on the item or from a first line of text.
Box Folder Contents
1 13
Articles (music) undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript list.

1 14
Art & psychology of musical programing, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 15
Born into a professional musical family ... , 1977
1 item (3 leaves)

Typescript about the state of music education in general and at the University at Buffalo.

1 16
Brahms notes, undated
4 items (4 leaves)

Manuscripts of notes with ideas about articles concerning Johannes Brahms.

1 17
Hints on zipping thru the program, undated
1 item (2 leaves)

Typescript comments about practicing music.

1 18
The history of the Arts goes back far enough ... , undated
1 item (1 leaves)

Typescript about artistic and educational trends in the twentieth century.

1 19
How to practice the piano without much profit, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript pointing out common errors in practice technique.

1 20
It was about 31 years ago, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about joy in music performance.

1 21
On teaching, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript about what makes a good teacher.

1 22
Playing from memory, 1979
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 23
Saint-Saëns lived fourscore years ... , undated
1 item (1 leaves)

Manuscript with comments about composers Saint-Saëns, Chopin, and Milhaud.

1 24
Searching for the formulas that develop functional keyboard, with no time wasted, undated
2 items (2 leaves)

Typescript notes about keyboard skills.

1 25
Some composer writes piano variations on a theme of Handel ... , undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript notes about tonal keys in music.

1 26
Some theories about theory, undated
1 item (4 leaves)

Mimeographed typescript notes concerning music theory pedagogy.

1 27
There are hundreds of talented, ambitious, hard-working soloists ... , 1980
1 item (2 leaves)

Photocopied typescript of letter without addressee about the music profession.

1 28
Unsuccessful syncopation, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript list of musical examples.

1 29
Untitled list of musical works, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript list of musical examples.

1 30
Variations on an American Air (a joke for musicians) undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript notes on performance of his piece Variations on an American Air: Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, Walter Hendl, conductor and piano soloist, Aug. 14, 1962.

1 31
X-number of basic principles of ensemble performance, undated
1 item (2 leaves)

Typescript notes to one of his children about musical performance.

II. C    People, 1977-1993
Folders 32-44
Arranged in alphabetical order by person who is subject of the writing. A list of names is in the first folder. It only partially corresponds to the writings in the collection.
Box Folder Contents
1 32
Personages, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript list.

1 33
Bartók, Béla, 1881-1945: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 34
Bernstein, Leonard, 1918-1990: undated
2 items (2 leaves)

One manuscript and one typescript. Manuscript also contains comments about Antonia Brico.

1 35
Brico, Antonia: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 36
Casadesus, Robert, 1899-1972: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 37
Dushkin, Samuel, 1891-1976: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript. Also contains paragraph about his mother, Lillian Hawley Gearhart.

1 38
Gearhart, Lillian, b. 1889: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 39
Hutcheson, Ernest, 1871-1951: undated
1 item (2 leaves)

Manuscript.

1 40
Milhaud, Darius, 1892-1974: undated
3 items (4 leaves)

Two typescripts and one manuscript. The manuscript is also about the musical scene in Paris in the late 1930s.

1 41
Philipp, Isidore, 1863-1958: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript. Also contains one paragraph about Fritz Reiner.

1 42
Schnabel, Artur, 1882-1951: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 43
Stravinsky, Igor, 1882-1971: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 44
Waring, Fred, 1900-1984: undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

II. D     Boulanger, Nadia: 1977-1991
Folders 45-51
Arranged alphabetically by document title or first line of text.
Box Folder Contents
1 45
At Rue Ballu ... , undated
1 item (5 leaves)

Manuscript.

1 46
Memories of Nadia Boulanger, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 47
Nadia Boulanger, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 48
She lectured me ... , undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 49
That woman arranged for my funding by an expatriate affluent American, Atherton Curtis, 1977
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 50
There is absolutely no trace of memory to explain how I happened to be sitting at Nadia Boulanger's elbow, undated
1 item (2 leaves)

Typescript.

1 51
With Nadia, 1991
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

III.    Correspondence, 1937-1997
Folders 52-97

Chiefly consists of correspondence received by Livingston Gearhart. Correspondence written by Gearhart can be found in the following folders: James Coover, under Gearhart's name, Pamela Gearhart, C. Paul Herfurth, Harriet Simons, and William Thomson.

Arranged alphabetically by correspondent name.

Box Folder Contents
1 52 Althouse, Jay: July 26, 1984, September 25, 1986
2 items (2 leaves)

Typescripts on behalf of Shawnee Press. 1984 letter addressed to Virginia Waring.

1 53 Arnell, Richard, 1917-2009: November 7, 1942
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript. Mentions possible performance of his work by Sir Thomas Beecham.

1 54 Boulanger, Nadia: September 5, 1937
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript in French with separate English translation.

1 55 Bureau de concerts Alfred Lyon : April 1, 1939
1 item (2 leaves)

Typescript contract in French for performance with Virginia Clotfelter.

1 56 Bureau de concerts Marcel de Valmalète : undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript contract in French for performance by Virginia Clotfelter at Salle Chopin.

1 57 Casadesus, Robert, 1899-1972 : December 27, 1938, August 23, 1939
2 items (2 leaves)

1 manuscript, 1 typescript, both in French. 1939 letter written on behalf of Casino de Vichy by unidentified author with additional handwritten note by Casadesus.

1 58 Coover, James, 1925-2004 : circa 1977-1981
3 items (4 leaves)

Typescripts from Livingston Gearhart to James Coover.

1 59 De Lancie, John, 1921-2002 : April 12, 1984, October 1, 1995, October 6, 1995, March 24, 1997
4 items (4 leaves)

Typescript letters. The last letter addressed to Pamela Gearhart.

1 60 Decreus, Camille, 1876-1939 : 1939
3 items (3 leaves)

Manuscript letters in French by the director of the Conservatoire américain de Fontainebleau.

1 61 Dello Joio, Norman, 1913-2008 : undated
1 item (2 leaves)

Manuscript.

1 62 Diamond, David, 1915-2005 : October 8, 1943
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript letter with references to Theodore Chanler and Oscar Levant.

1 63 Diller, Angela, 1877-1968 : undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 64 Durand, Jacques, Madame, d. 1958 : November 1, 1939
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript letter in French.

1 65 Dushkin, Samuel, 1891-1976 : 1940 or 1941
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 66 Firkušný, Rudolf, 1912-1994 : undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 67 Gearhart, Livingston : undated
1 item (2 leaves)

Typescript addressed to "Diane" without surname.

1 68 Gearhart, Pamela : undated
2 items (2 leaves)

Typescript from Livingston to Pamela; manuscript from Pamela Gearhart to Norma Jean Lamb.

1 69 Glanville-Hicks, Peggy : November 17, 1942
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript letter signed "Peggy Bate" with mention of husband Stanley Bate.

1 70 Harper, Raymond, Mrs. : February 22, 1945
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 71 Herfurth, C. Paul (Clarence Paul), 1893-1988 : 1975-1979
10 items

Typescript letters; 5 from Herfurth; 4 in response from Livingston Gearhart; 1 from Pamela Gearhart to Herfurth.

1 72 Hill, Richard S. (Richard Snyder), 1901-1961 : November 8, 1944
1 item (2 leaves)

Typescript addressed to Don E. Cassel care of Livingston Gearhart. Written on Library of Congress Music Division letterhead.

1 73 Jacoby, Herbert : 1940
2 items

Manuscript letters confirming employment of Livingston Gearhart and Virginia Morley at the Hotel Brevoort Supper Club or Le Ruban Bleu club owned by Jacoby.

1 74 Klein, John, 1915-1981 : March 14, 1946
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 75 Lamb, Norma Jean : September 28, 1978, February 12, 1979
2 items (2 leaves)

1 manuscript and 1 typescript. Typescript written on Buffalo & Erie County Public Library letterhead.

1 76 Lawton, Dorothy, 1881-1960 : February 10, 1945
1 item

Manuscript letter on paper with New York Public Library letterhead.

1 77 MacDermott, Theo : July 12, 1939
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript. Note inserted states that Theo MacDermott was personal secretary to Sir Basil Zaharoff.

1 78 Massing, Jeanne Jettas : July 4, 1984
1 item (3 leaves)

Manuscript letter with two small photographs attached: one of the author's mother, the other of Lillian Hawley Gearhart. Also enclosed, one newspaper clipping about a concert in 1933 by Lillian and Livingston Gearhart, with photograph of the pair.

1 79 Phillips, Benjamin : June 25, 1993
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 80 Pleyel (Firm) : March 29, 1939
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript in French.

1 81 Reinhardt, Aurelia Henry, 1877-1948 : circa 1942
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 82 Reisenberg, Nadia : February 18, 1940
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 83 Rieti, Vittorio, 1898-1994 : March 30, 1943
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 84 Robertson, Rae, 1893-1956 : January 14, 1945
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript letter marked Urgent, informing Gearhart that the piano duo Bartlett and Robertson would be filling in for concerts for Morley and Gearhart in their absence. The other member of the duo was Ethel Bartlett (1896-1978).

1 85 Schaeffer, Myron : December 4, 1945
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript.

1 86 Section musicale du conseil superieur de la radiodiffusion : July 1939
2 items (2 leaves)

Typescript in French.

1 87 Schneider, Alexander, 1908-1993 : undated
3 items (3 leaves)

Manuscripts. One item possibly by Alexander Schneider's daughter, Natascha.

1 88 Schneider, Mischa, 1905-1985 : August 3, 1946
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 89 Shawnee Press : 1988
8 items

Typescripts from three employees: Ruth S. Sibley, Albert E. DeRenzis, and Steve Kanych.

1 90 Simons, Harriet : July 17, 1975
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript letter from Gearhart to conductor Harriet Simons concerning planned performance of Gearhart's Dry bones and Gearhart's association with John Cage.

1 91 Stewart, Reginald : August 28, 1945
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 92 Tabuteau, Marcel, 1887-1966 : May 27, 1943
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript.

1 93 Talma, Louise, 1906-1996 : May 8, 1946
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript with notice of May 11, 1946 performance of her Toccata for Orchestra by the NBC Orchestra.

1 94 Tansman, Alexandre, 1897-1986 : 1943
2 items (2 leaves)

Typescripts. One in French.

1 95 Thomson, William, 1927- : undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Typescript by Gearhart to Thomson with manuscript response by Thomson.

1 96 Waring, Virginia : February 13, 1985
1 item (3 leaves)

Manuscript.

1 97 Unidentified correspondent, undated
1 item (1 leaf)

Manuscript in French.

IV.    Teaching materials, 1955-1985
Folders 98-104

These folders contain examples, exercises, and examinations prepared by Gearhart for use in his classes. They also include his notes that critique how the courses are taught and related matters.

Box Folder Contents
2 98 Basic keyboard class notes, 1955-1985
1 folder
2 99 Basic keyboard class proposals and policies, 1955-1985
1 folder
2 100 Basic keyboard class outlines, 1955-1985
1 folder
2 101 Basic keyboard class music and examinations, 1955-1985
1 folder
2 102 Basic keyboard class assorted documents, 1955-1985
1 folder
2 103 Keyboard harmony, 1955-1985
1 folder
2 104 Orchestration, 1955-1985
1 folder
Box Folder Contents
2 105 Programs, 1939-1979
5 items
2 106 Clippings, 1933-1977
16 items
Box Folder Contents
2 107 Nadia Boulanger memorial concert folder, 1980
4 items

Contains program of October 22, 1980 memorial concert held at University at Buffalo, concert announcement, and lecture notes written by Gearhart.

2 108 Nadia Boulanger clippings, 1976. 1979, 1980
3 items

Search Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Library's online catalog.

Contributors

Gearhart, Pamela

Subjects

Boulanger, Nadia
Composers--New York (State)--Buffalo
Conservatoire américain de Fontainebleau
Curtis Institute of Music
Musicians

Genres

clippings (information artifacts)
correspondence

Associated Material

Separated Material

Photographs received with the collection were removed to form a separate collection, Mus. Arc. 23.3.

Related Resources

Related Resources in the Music Library

Collection of manuscript and published scores composed or arranged by Livingston Gearhart. Also includes published scores of other composers as annotated by Gearhart.

Collection of 26 images, including photographs of Nadia Boulanger and her summer class of 1938, Gearhart and his first wife, Virginia Morley (Waring) at Mills College in California, with composer Darius Milhaud and his family, and the Budapest String Quartet. The collection also includes four photographs of composer Johannes Brahms in 1896. Also available as a digital collection in University Libraries Digital Collections .

Collection of 24 recordings, including compositions and arrangements by Livingston Gearhart, his memorial service, and the recordings of duo-pianists, Morley and Gearhart.

Related Resources at Other Institutions

Pennsylvania State University's collection of itmes related to the Fred Waring shows, including some of Livingston Gearhart's arrangements.