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Guide to the Leonard Berkowitz Collection, 1914-2000
SC/LBC  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Biographical Information:
  • Access Terms
  • Administrative Information
  • Arrangement of Materials:
  • Scope and Contents

  • Overview of the Collection

    Collection Title: Leonard Berkowitz Collection
    Dates: 1914-2000
    Bulk Dates: 1963-1969
    Identification: SC/LBC
    Creator: Berkowitz, Leonard, 1919-2007
    Physical Description: 10.38 linear feet
    Language of Materials: English
    Repository: Special Collections
    Abstract: The Leonard Berkowitz Collection documents Berkowitz's musical and academic career during his tenure at California State University, Northridge, from the mid-1960s through the early 1980s. The collection includes musical scores and audio recordings composed and produced by Berkowitz, as well as works by other composers.

    Biographical Information:

    Leonard Berkowitz was born on February 8, 1919 in Woodbury County, Iowa, to parents David and Anna (neé Kozberg) Berkowitz who emigrated from Russia to the United States in the first decade of the twentieth century. Sometime between 1927 and 1930, his father passed away, and Leonard, his mother, and sister relocated to Southern California, where he attended Los Angeles High School, graduating in 1936. Following high school, Berkowitz attended Yale University, and completed a bachelor's degree in music.
    Berkowitz enlisted in the United States Army on October 9, 1941 and served until discharged on September 12, 1945. After a brief visit to the Los Angeles area, he returned to Yale and studied under famed German composer, musician, and conductor, Paul Hindemith. In 1948, Berkowitz completed a master's degree in Music Theory and Composition, and began teaching at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
    In 1961, Leonard Berkowitz and his wife, Lucille, moved to the Southern California area and settled in the San Fernando Valley, where he accepted an Associate Faculty position, in the Department of Music at San Fernando Valley State College (now CSUN). In addition to teaching, Berkowitz composed many musical scores and performed his works at CSUN and various venues throughout Southern California. Following retirement in 1984, Berkowitz and his wife relocated to the Seattle, Washington area where he continued to perform locally and pursued an interest in fine art photography. Leonard Berkowitz passed away on September 16, 2007.

    Access Terms

    This Collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.

    Genre/Form of Material:

    Audio recordings
    Paper records
    Publications

    Administrative Information

    Processing Information:

    Special Collections and Archives Staff

    Conditions Governing Use:

    Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s) of this collection has been transferred to California State University, Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

    Conditions Governing Access:

    The collection is open for research use.

    Preferred Citation:

    For information about citing items in this collection consult the appropriate style manual, or see the Citing Archival Materials  guide.

    Arrangement of Materials:

    Series I: Musical Scores by Leonard Berkowitz, 1956-1973, 2000
        Subseries A: Ensembles of Six or More Instruments, 1963-1967
        Subseries B: Ensembles of Five or Less Instruments and Solo Works, 1956-1973, 2000
        Subseries C: Vocal Works , 1964-1969
    Series II: Musical Scores by Other Composers, 1914-1982
    Series III: Audio Recordings, 1962-1998

    Scope and Contents

    The Leonard Berkowitz Collection documents Berkowitz's musical and academic career during his tenure at California State University, Northridge, from the mid-1960s through the early 1980s. The collection includes musical scores and audio recordings composed and produced by Berkowitz, as well as works by other composers. The collection has been divided into three series: Series I,Musical Scores by Leonard Berkowitz (1956-1973, 2000), Series II, Musical Scores by Other Composers (1914-1982), and Series III, Audio Recordings by Leonard Berkowitz (1962-1998).
    Series I, Musical Scores by Leonard Berkowitz, has been divided into three subseries. Subseries A, Ensembles of Six or More Instruments (1963-1967), consists of conductor's scores and instrumental parts. His works are characterized by dense harmonies and instrumentation to create dramatic textural contrasts. Berkowitz uses free 12-tone compositional style and bimodality, as well as passages derived from the octatonic scale and other non-diatonic scales. Subseries B: Ensembles of Five or Less Instruments and Solo Works (1956-1973, 2000), consists of largely contrapuntal works, with strong rhythmic motives and disjunct melodies reminiscent of Paul Hindemith’s style. Subseries C: Vocal Works(1964-1969), consists of compositions influenced by Renaissance madrigals and the chorales of J.S. Bach. The syllabic melodies of Berkowitz's vocal works are much more conjunct than those of his instrumental works. Each subseries is arranged chronologically, with instrumental parts in score order. Undated compositions are arranged alphabetically by composition title, and placed at the rear of the series.
    Series II, Musical Scores by Other Composers, contains a small selection of music with notes on compositional styles, harmonic and structural analysis, and rehearsal notations penciled by Berkowitz. This series is arranged alphabetically by composer.
    Series III, Audio Recordings, consists of the compositions of Leonard Berkowitz in eight volumes. Dates in this series reflect the date of recording and are arranged by volume number.