12 March 2024 Blogs, Academic, Faculty, Librarian

What are college music students studying and why?

Offering interdisciplinary insights, musical scores from Boosey & Hawkes are a perennial favorite

Lasting innovation in academia was an unexpected outcome of the pandemic. One example is widespread use of digital resources for the performing arts. When universities shifted to all-remote learning, libraries supported faculty with online collections, replacing physical scores with digital classroom and study materials that could be accessed anytime, anywhere – conveniences that built new habits.

To feed that demand, libraries often turn to Alexander Street, part of Clarivate, one of the first to develop digital resources for the performing arts that include pedagogical devices for studying musical scores. In addition to enriching content with these digital tools. Alexander Street is known for its ability to identify and partner with publishers whose musical scores are demanded most often in classrooms.

Boosey & Hawkes is consistently popular

A recent five-year analysis of Alexander Street musical scores usage statistics shows that of the 170 musical scores publishing companies in Music Online: Classical Scores Library, Boosey & Hawkes has stayed in the top five most-used throughout.

Musicians, both seasoned and those in the early stages of their career, are often drawn to the scores provided by Boosey & Hawkes not only because of their practical application in recitals and auditions, but for the profound contributions the works offer. Going beyond performance tools, the works serve as gateways that foster a deeper understanding of historical narratives and the interplay between literature and music, as well as offering educational insights.

Top-used titles show the interdisciplinary nature of scores

Boosey & Hawkes' top five used classical music titles from Music Online: Classical Scores Library shows their impact and significance.

    1. Aaron Copland's "Appalachian Spring Suite” captures the essence of the American landscape. This composition skilfully weaves a sense of nostalgia through folk melodies, rhythmic patterns and harmonic structures reminiscent of the American heartland.
    2. Benjamin Britten's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" intertwines literature and music, offering an intriguing subject for interdisciplinary exploration, while serving as a captivating case study for researchers delving into the interplay of voice and instruments in choral and orchestral realms.
    3. Igor Stravinsky's "The Rite of Spring" revolutionized 20th-century music with innovative dissonance, rhythm and orchestration. This masterpiece challenged traditional norms. Its avant-garde premiere in 1913 sparked a riot, leaving a profound impact on both music and dance, transcending artistic boundaries.
    4. Benjamin Britten reappears on the top used titles list with "War Requiem," a score that is intimately linked to the socio-political repercussions of World War II. This title emerges as a poignant choice for researchers exploring the intersection of music and contemporary issues. Reflecting the emotional and societal impacts of war, Britten’s work stands as a timeless exploration of the human experience during times of conflict.
    5. Benjamin Britten secures another spot on the top titles list with "The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra," which holds immense educational significance. Crafted with a specific focus on introducing young audiences to the orchestra, this composition takes on added value for educators and learners interested in pedagogical approaches.

Bringing more of what users want

The latest collaboration between Alexander Street and Boosey & Hawkes, Music Online: Classical Scores Library, Volume VI - The Boosey & Hawkes Collection, brings a valuable extension to the Classical Scores Library. Within its 400,000 pages – with compositions spanning from the Baroque to the Contemporary period – more than 1000 works spotlight women composers. Featuring compositions by Marjory Kennedy-Fraser's "Songs of the Hebrides," Unsuk Chin's "12 Piano Etudes," Elena Kats-Chernin's "Dark Wind Blowing," and Sheila Nelson's "Right From the Start," Volume VI delivers a more inclusive representation of the classical music canon.

Accessible performance material

Aligned with all volumes of Music Online: Classical Scores Library, this collection guarantees on-campus public performance rights. This streamlined access simplifies the administrative process for both students and institutions, allowing for public performances on campus, as well as for on-campus recitals or auditions.

Every note tells a story

ProQuest also collaborates with other top brands, renowned labels and partners such as QwestTV, Concord and Dancio to enable libraries to be the source of a rich, diverse mix of content spanning audio, video, primary sources and musical scores.

Team with your users and explore this fascinating curated content. Sign up for a free trial.

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