Academic journal article Fontes Artis Musicae

Alfred Levy Archive of Cuban Music at Michigan State University

Academic journal article Fontes Artis Musicae

Alfred Levy Archive of Cuban Music at Michigan State University

Article excerpt

Michigan State University has acquired the Alfredo Levy Conservatory Collection, originally held by the Conservatorio de Musica Alfredo Levy in Havana, Cuba. Dr. Ricardo Lorenz, MSU Associate Professor of Music and Chair of Music Composition, became aware of its existence in 2002 and encouraged the acquisition of the collection by the MSU Libraries when its owner sought a buyer. Dr. Miriam Escudero, Director of Musical Patrimony of the Office of the Historian of the City of Havana, Cuba, supported the acquisition as an important measure to ensure its preservation and access by students and scholars. The collection is housed in MSU Libraries' Special Collections where it is being organized and assessed for preservation needs.

Alfredo Levy Nadal (1914-1999) was a well-known composer and pianist when he founded the conservatory bearing his name in 1947. A dedicated teacher, Levy had taught previously at Havana's Conservatorio Hubert de Blanck and was choral director at the Escuela Vocacional Jose M. Valdes Rodriguez for nearly 20 years, from 1946 to 1965. As a pianist, he premiered works of important Cuban composers such as Joaquin Nin Castellanos and Joaquin Nin-Culmell, and accompanied some of the island's most illustrious singers, including the Cuban sopranos Carmelina Santana Reyes and Iris Burguet, touring internationally with Burguet. Levy directed the chorus of the Teatro Musical de La Habana from 1970-1976, a period which saw the Cuban premiers of important international works at the Teatro. He lived in the home which had also been his conservatory until his death in 1999, after which the large trove of music, books and memorabilia collected over a lifetime was purchased by a private collector in the U. …

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