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Pauline Oliveros Papers
MSS 102  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Restrictions
  • Acquisition Information
  • Preferred Citation
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Biography

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Pauline Oliveros Papers
    Identifier/Call Number: MSS 102
    Contributing Institution: Mandeville Special Collections Library
    9500 Gilman Drive
    La Jolla, California, 92093-0175
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 20.4 Linear feet (31 archives boxes, 7 flat boxes, 2 mapcase folders, and 2 card file boxes)
    Date (bulk): Bulk, 1951 - 1981
    Date (inclusive): 1946 - 1981
    Abstract: Papers of Pauline Oliveros, American experimental musician, composer and key figure in the development of contemporary electronic music. The collection contains Oliveros' original writings, compositions, correspondence and sketches. Also included are interviews, programs and reviews, teaching materials and writings about and relating to Oliveros' work.
    Creator: Oliveros, Pauline, 1932-

    Restrictions

    Film located in Box 1, Folder 21 is restricted. Researchers must request a user copy to be produced.

    Acquisition Information

    Not Available

    Preferred Citation

    Pauline Oliveros Papers, MSS 102. Special Collections & Archives, UC San Diego.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    Papers of Pauline Oliveros, composer, accordionist and former music professor at UCSD. Materials include correspondence, works and writings by Pauline Oliveros and others, manuscripts of Oliveros' compositions, subject files, reel-to-reel audio tapes and ephemera. These materials were originally located at UCSD's Music Library.
    The papers are arranged in eleven series: 1) WORKS BY PAULINE OLIVEROS, 2) WRITINGS, 3) PROJECTS, 4) INTERVIEWS AND CRITICISMS, 5) PROGRAMS AND REVIEWS, 6) UNIVERSITY MATERIALS, 7) WORKS BY OTHERS, 8) WRITINGS BY OTHERS, 9) CORRESPONDENCE, 10) BIOGRAPHICAL and 11) ELECTRONIC MUSIC SYSTEMS.
    SERIES 1: WORKS BY PAULINE OLIVEROS
    The WORKS BY PAULINE OLIVEROS series includes two subseries: A) Compositions and B) Sketches.
    A) The Compositions subseries consists of Oliveros' catalog of musical compositions from 1951-1980, manuscript scores, drafts, sketches and related programs, correspondence and photographs. Notable works include Sonic Meditations, Sound Patterns, and Theater of Substitution series.
    B) The Sketches subseries includes primarily interpretive artwork and composition notes from 1957-1960. Some unidentified and oversized sketches are also included.
    SERIES 2: WRITINGS
    The WRITINGS series is arranged alphabetically and includes manuscript drafts, typescripts and some supporting correspondence and notes. Included is material for Oliveros' book, Software for People: Collected Writings 1963-80, published in 1984.
    SERIES 3: PROJECTS
    The PROJECTS series includes various documents on some of the early projects Pauline Oliveros was involved with. This series includes three subseries: A) San Francisco Tape Music Center at Mills College, B) Meditation Projects, and C) The Woman's Ensemble.
    A) The San Francisco Tape Music Center, of which Oliveros was one of the original members, was an important resource for electronic music during the 1960's. The Center later moved to Mills College. This subseries includes typescript articles and miscellaneous materials relating to the Center's proposal for an environmental exhibit, Summer Tour 1964 information, concert reviews, publicity information and other documents.
    B) The Meditation Projects subseries includes outlines and reports, journals, questionaires and meditation materials relating to Oliveros' work exploring mental and physical exercises in concentration and how that affects techniques for rehearsal and performance of music. Materials include Oliveros' notes, reports on the Meditation Project, and other materials on awareness and meditation. Materials date from 1972-1975.
    C) The Women's Ensemble was a group formed by Oliveros to explore sonic meditations. The materials in this subseries include texts and brochures of the ensemble, group meeting notes, Oliveros' diary, photographs, reviews and some related correspondence.
    SERIES 4: INTERVIEWS AND CRITICISMS
    INTERVIEWS AND CRITICISMS includes three subseries: A) Interviews with Pauline Oliveros, B) Interviews by Pauline Oliveros, and C) Writings about Pauline Oliveros. The date range for these materials is 1963-1981.
    A) Interviews with Pauline Oliveros subseries is arranged in alphbetical order by author and includes published interviews with Oliveros relating to her career and electronic music. The date range for these materials is 1976-1981.
    B) Interviews by Pauline Oliveros subseries are interview typescripts arranged in alphabetical order by interviewee and include interviews of colleagues and musicians involved in electronic and experimental music such as fellow Deep Listening Band member Stuart Dempster. These interviews are from 1978-1979.
    C) Writings about Pauline Oliveros subseries are published articles and criticisms about Oliveros and her work and are arranged alphabetically by author. These materials date from 1963-1980.
    SERIES 5: PROGRAMS AND REVIEWS
    PROGRAMS AND REVIEWS are divided into two subseries: A) Programs and B) Reviews. Each subseries is arranged chronologically.
    A) The Programs subseries ranges from 1949-1982 and includes programs of Oliveros' concerts, performances, recitals and workshops.
    B) Reviews include primarily newspaper clippings of reviews of Oliveros' musical performances. Materials are arranged chronologically and range in date from 1945-1981.
    SERIES 6: UNIVERSITY MATERIALS
    UNIVERSITY MATERIALS illustrate part of Oliveros' teaching career. The bulk of the materials are from Oliveros' tenure as a faculty member at UCSD and include course materials, reports, and grants/teaching proposals which range from 1964-1981. This series is broken down into five subseries which include: A) Teaching Materials, B) Teaching by Others, C) Administrative Materials, D) Center for Music Experiment (CME), E) Committees and F) Other.
    A) Teaching Materials include class materials, course plans and exercises primarily from Oliveros' classes at UCSD and are arranged chronologically from 1964-1981.
    B) Teachings by Others includes bibliographies, course materials and some teaching exercises from Oliveros' colleagues.
    C) Administrative Materials include proposals, resoures for research and development, guidelines and questions for the Graduate Entrance Exam.
    D) Center for Music Experiment (CME) materials span from 1975-1979 and include Advisory Committee notes, CME proposals, reports and other administrative documents relating to the establishment of the Center.
    E) The Committees subseries includes Electronics Committee materials, of which Oliveros was a member, and document her involvement from 1968-1979; material relating to the Committee on Space from 1976-1977; and materials relating to Electronics Environment research project, 1969-1971.
    F) Other Materials include other Oliveros' teaching projects and workshop materials, as well as conference and festival materials, miscellaneous student projects, leave forms and other UCSD related correspondence.
    SERIES 7: WORKS BY OTHERS
    The WORKS BY OTHERS series is arranged alphbetically and includes works by fellow composers and musicians involved in experimental electronic music. Some notable works by Robert Erickson and Jackson Mac Low are included. A good portion of this series are oversize holograph scores. This series ranges from 1966-1981 and also includes some unidentified scores.
    SERIES 8: WRITINGS BY OTHERS
    The WRITINGS BY OTHERS series is arranged in alphabetical order and includes articles, essays and interviews relating to electronic and experiemental music by Oliveros' colleagues, fellow composers and musicians from 1961-1981.
    SERIES 9: CORRESPONDENCE
    The CORRESPONDENCE series is arranged in alphbetical order by correspondent and includes letters to Oliveros and also some correspondence between Oliveros and fellow musicians, university departments and colleagues, and other entities such as Bell Telephone Laboratories, Electronic Music Review, and League of Women Composers. This series includes materials from 1968-1979.
    SERIES 10: BIOGRAPHICAL
    The BIOGRAPHICAL series is divided into two subseries: A) General and B) Grants and Awards.
    A) The General subseries includes Oliveros' early childhood scrapbook from 1946, high school and college memorabilia, her career narrative and curriculum vitae from 1957-1980, as well as miscellaneous drawings, oversize artwork, and Oliveros' sketchbook.
    B) The Grants and Awards subseries includes various documents relating to grants, awards and panels which Oliveros participated in, including the National Endowment for the Arts - Composers, Librettists and Translators Panel and Music Advisory Panel. These materials date from 1961-1981.
    SERIES 11: ELECTRONIC MUSIC SYSTEMS
    This series holds materials on the Buchla Electronic Music System, 1969 and the Ionic Industries, Inc. electronic music synthesis system, 1972. Files include users manuals, correspondence and other information annotated by Oliveros on these electronic systems.

    Biography

    Pauline Oliveros was born in Houston, Texas in 1932. An accomplished accordianist, composer and teacher, she is an instrumental figure in the world of electronic music. Oliveros was a founding member of the San Francisco Tape Music Center, a resource for electronic music in the 1960s. Later, the Center moved to Mills College and became the Center for Contemporary Music where Oliveros was the Center's first director.
    Oliveros' teaching career spans several decades. She left Mills College in 1967 when she accepted a faculty position at the University of California, San Diego. From 1976-1979 Oliveros served as the director of the Center for Music Experiment (CME), later renamed The Center for Research in Computing and the Arts (CRCA) at UCSD.
    In 1981 she moved to upstate New York to work as an independent composer and performer. She then became the Distinguished Research Professor of Music at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, in Troy, New York and the Darius Milhaud Artist-in-Residence at Mills College.
    Oliveros is the founder of The Deep Listening Institute, formerly the Pauline Oliveros Foundation. In 1991 she coined the term "Deep Listening". The Institute explains Deep Listening philosophy , stating that it "distinguishes the difference between the involuntary nature of hearing and the voluntary selective nature of listening. The result of the practice cultivates appreciation of sounds on a heightened level, expanding the potential for connection and interaction with one's environment, technology and performance with others in music and related arts." Out of this philosophy, Oliveros formed the Deep Listening Band with fellow musicians David Gamper and Stuart Dempster.
    Oliveros has been a great influence on American electronic and experimental music. In 2009, she won the William Schuman Award for lifetime achievement from Columbia University and in 2010, a retrospective of her work from 1960 to 2010 was performed in honor of the award.
    On March 19th, 2012, Oliveros became the recipient of the John Cage Award from the Foundation of Contemporary Arts. Also in 2012, Pauline Oliveros celebrated her 80th birthday with year long celebration performances, Deep Listening activities and residencies.
    Some of her notable works include Sonic Meditations, Sound Patterns, and Theater of Substitution series. She has also written several books on music theory and electronic music including Sounds the Margins: Collected Writings 1992-2009, Deep Listening: A Composer's Sound Practice, Roots of the Moment, Software for People: Collected Writings 1963-80.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Deep Listening Band.
    Deep Listening Institute.
    University of California, San Diego -- Faculty -- Archives
    University of California, San Diego. Center for Music Experiment.
    University of California, San Diego. Center for Research in Computing and the Arts.
    Avant-garde (Music)--United States--20th century
    Composers -- United States -- 20th century
    Computer music
    Electronic music
    Music -- 20th century