Tutt Library Research Guides
If you want to find works by a composer, do an AUTHOR search in the Tiger catalog. This will bring up anything she has created (scores, recordings, writings, etc).
If you want to find out about a composer, do a SUBJECT search.
For both of these searches, use this order-last name, first name:
Many contemporary composers have websites with sound files and biographical information.
Use a keyword search in Tiger, selecting View Entire Collection-- and the most specific information that you have, such as key, a distinctive title (name of song or work), opus number, or thematic index number of piece:
Topic Subject Searches
Use the uniform title of a work to discover all versions of the work.
You can use Prospector to order materials that are either checked out or not owned by the campus libraries.
In short, when searching for a musical work (score or recording) it's best to use a KEYWORD search, using the composer's name and the name of the work-using the most specific information you have for the work's title. For this course, you will probably be searching for works that have distinctive titles--like Don Giovanni or Nabucco--so a simple title search may suffice.
This is the short explanation...read on if you're brave. Always remember--ask us to help you find a musical work for you if you come up with no results--this can be quite tricky!
Beethoven's 5th Symphony, for example, could be more completely named Symphony No. 5 in c minor, Op. 67. You'll get results in Tiger if you search under Beethoven's 5th Symphony, because this work is very popular and we have lots of examples. But, let's assume it's not as well known. If I have the full title, I could search with these terms, "Beethoven Op. 67". Composers' works are often organized by opus numbers (abbreviated as op.) thereby assigning each work a distinctive number, identifying that work alone. In principal an opus number is the most specific piece of information I have about a title.
Scores can be difficult to find because composers often use a generic title, such as "concerto" or "symphony", which refers to the genre of the musical work itself. Composers often produce many works using the same title, such as string quartet No. 1, string quartet No. 2, etc.
To help your searching, librarians use a uniform title to bring together all the arrangements and editions of a particular work.
Many works, particularly vocal pieces, have distinctive titles that are not the name of a musical form. Librarians have adopted uniform titles to gather these together as well.
Searching for a part of a work can be challenging. An aria from an opera or a song selection from a musical is cataloged as a part of the work. Best results will require that you discover the title of the work your selection is from.
Finding popular song titles is particularly dependent upon verifying "official" titles.
Ask us! This can be complicated; we're happy to help you!
You will find collected works of many composers as well as monumental sets and series (works by various composers, eras) in our non-circulating area, call numbers M1-M3. These editions are authoritative, scholarly editions of musical works, appropriate for music research.
Choral Public Domain Library
Free, public domian choral/vocal scores, texts, translations, and other useful information.