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Pete White Fonds

  • CA ON00349 2017.020
  • Fonds
  • 1888 - 2022

This fonds has been arranged into five series based on the creator’s order. These series are as follows:
Series One: Songwriting
Series Two: Screenwriting
Series Three: Digital Print Writing
Series Four: Writers Guild of Canada
Series Five: Kaslo/Kootenays and Mining
Series One: Songwriting includes records pertaining to White’s songwriting career with Paul Hann. This series has been arranged into subseries as follows:
Subseries One: Commercial Releases includes Paul Hann’s commercial albums and singles, with songs written by White. Records in this series include 12 in. vinyl LPs for “A Fine White Thread,” “Another Tumbleweed,” “Paul Hann,” “High Test” and “Hometown Hero.” It also includes 8-track cassettes of “A Fine White Thread,” “Another Tumbleweed,” and “Paul Hann.” This subseries also features commercially released compilation albums featuring Paull Hann, including “In the Dawning: A Story of Canada” on 12 in. vinyl as well as compact disc. It also includes “The ACME Sausage Company,” a compilation of CKUA radio featuring a performance by Paul Hann. Finally, this subseries includes the limited release compact disc “Acrid Smoke and Amber Drink: The Lost Songs of Pete White and Paul Hann 1968-1978.”
Subseries Two: Original Recordings and Digital Transfers includes various recordings made by White and Hann on ¼ in. audio tape as well as 2 in. audio tape. This includes registration demos for BMI, outtakes, unreleased singles, interim mixes, and master recordings of songs and albums. This also includes recordings made by Paul Hann and the band Canadian Club for CKUA radio. Finally, this subseries includes digital transfers of audio tapes to compact disc.
Subseries Three: Film and Television Soundtracks
This subseries includes recordings made by White and Hann for film and television soundtracks on ¼ in. audio tape. This includes compositions for “The Parent Puzzle,” “Faces of Yesterday: History of Schooling in Alberta”, “Prairie Years,” and “Come Alive.”
Subseries Four: Songs Lists, Lyrics, Chronologies includes records related to White’s songwriting and publishing career with Paul Hann. Records in this subseries include songs lists and publisher share information, music and lyrics, contracts, and correspondence.
Subseries Five: Business Affairs includes records related to the business and management side of White’s work with Paul Hann. Included in this subseries are correspondence, performance contracts, mechanical license agreements, songwriting and publishing agreements, recording contracts, original music service agreements and composers’ agreements, song registration forms, and royalties statements.
Subseries Six: Promo Materials and Photos includes records related to the promotional aspects of White’s work with Paul Hann. Included in this subseries are press kits, aggregated reviews, and promotional photographs.
Subseries Seven: Clippings and Ephemera includes newspaper and magazine clippings related to White and Hann’s music career, as well as festival and performance programmes. This subseries also includes copies of the book “The Game of Our Lives” by Peter Gzowski, which includes the lyrics to White and Hann’s song “Hometown Hero” in its preface.
Series Two: Screenwriting includes records related to White’s screenwriting career, and it has been arranged into the following subseries based on a career chronology provided by the creator:
Subseries One: One-Off Short Films includes records related to short films written by White. Records in this subseries include screenplays, shooting scripts, and script outlines. Works represented in this subseries include: “Starting Over,” “The Treasure,” “Generations”, “The Ballet Class,” “Snowbirds,” “Years of Sorrow, Years of Shame,” and “Scarlet Heritage.”
Subseries Two: Television Series includes records related to television shows written by White. Records in this subseries include screenplays, shooting scripts, treatments, outlines and premises, episode screeners and dubs, correspondence, press clippings, show prep memos, cast lists, shooting schedules, day out of days schedules, beat sheets, and notes. Works represented in this subseries include: “The Parent Puzzle,” “Stony Plain,” “The Beachcombers,” “Danger Bay,” “The Campbells,” “Bordertown,” “Airwolf II,” “Family Pictures,” “War of the Worlds,” “Jericho 911,” “Northwood” and “Da Vinci’s Inquest.”
Subseries Three: Television Movies includes records related to television movies written by White. Records in this subseries include correspondence, treatments, outlines, screenplays, shooting scripts, production stills, promotional one-sheets, crew lists, call sheets, press clippings, preliminary VHS screeners, a production cap and crew t-shirt, as well as research interviews on audio tape. Works represented in this subseries include: “Striker’s Mountain,” “The Legend of Ruby Silver,” and “Peacekeepers.”
Subseries Four: Screenplays includes records related to screenplays written by White. Records in this subseries include screenplays, one-sheets, film proposals, and research materials. Works represented in this series include: “Four by Four,” “Slug Addiction: A Rock & Roll Fairy Tale”, “Nighthawk Crossing” (also known as “Crossing the Line”), “Scarlet Ladies,” “Mungo” and ‘Love and Genius.”
Subseries Five: Mini-Series includes records related to mini-series written by White. Records in this subseries include screenplays, development and series outlines, correspondence, notes, outlines, beat sheets, writer’s agreement and transfer of rights agreement, and research reports. Works represented in this subseries include: “The Temptations of Big Bear,” “Mountain Men,” “The Columbia Dams,” “Midnight Son,” “Thompson & Tyrell” and “The On-to-Ottawa Trek.”
Subseries Six: Movie Treatments includes records related to movie treatments written by White. Records in this series include treatments, synopses, and outlines. Works in this subseries include: “Bernie & The Guy,” “Craig’s Man,” “Lawrence After Arabia,” and “The Flying Bandit.”
Subseries Seven: Pitches includes records related to various pitches written by White. Records in this series include one-sheet pitches, story pitches, synopses, outlines, notes and research materials. Works in this series include, but are not limited to “Headless Valley,” “The Cheaters,” “Fall of a Prince,” and “Detachment.”
Subseries Eight: Screenwriting Projects Research Materials consists of records related to research done by White, predominantly pertaining to a potential series entitled “The Denisons of Canada.” Records in this subseries include grant applications, correspondence, a television series treatment, and a project description. It also includes a substantial amount of research materials, including books, book and journal excerpts, copies of historical records including maps, photographs, correspondence and diaries, archival finding aids, genealogical records, and bibliographies. Also included in this subseries are research files for a potential new instalment of “Peacekeepers,” set in Cyprus, in 1974, as well as research for a project entitled “Graveyard of the Pacific.”
Subseries Nine: Awards consists of awards and nominations received by White over the course of his screenwriting career. Included in this series are Gemini nomination certificates for “Striker’s Mountain,” “The Legend of the Ruby Silver,” and “Peacekeepers.” It also includes awards statuettes from the Writer’s Guild of Canada Top Ten Awards, for “Ruby Silver” and “Peacekeepers.”
Subseries Ten: Miscellaneous Files includes records labeled as miscellaneous by the creator, as well as records not easily ascribed to a particular title or production. Records in this series include correspondence, WGC project registrations for various titles, matted postcards, research clippings, a brochure for White’s production company (Kicking Horse Productions), writer’s contracts and purchase agreements, and a disc containing professional photographs of White.
Subseries Eleven: Books and Reference Materials consists of books related to White’s screenwriting career. Works in this series include “Telling It: Writing for Canadian Film and Television,” (which includes a chapter by White), and “Big Screen Country: Making Movies in Alberta.” It also includes two screenplays not written by White, a book about the Avro Arrow, and an Orenda Engines branded lighter.
Series Three: Digital Print Writing includes records related to White’s digital print writing work (including novels, novelizations, and memoirs). Included in this series is a copy of White’s novel, Crimea Sabre, as well as printing order details pertaining to this book. Also included in this series are research clippings pertaining to “Crimea Sabre.” This series also includes an essay by White about the founding of the Council of Canadians. This series also includes personal short stories, genealogical research records (including family trees, correspondence, copies of military service records, and scans of family photos), and a small amount of White’s personal materials (high school report cards, membership cards, track and field ribbons).
Series Four: Writer’s Guild of Canada includes records related to White’s work with the ACTRA Writer’s Guild as well as the Writer’s Guild of Canada, and the arrangement is largely based on the creator’s original order. Records in this series include correspondence, clippings, policy and discussion papers, policy proposals, lists of guild personnel and portfolios, meeting minutes and agendas, reports, forum and working group agendas, priorities and action items lists, speeches, and notes. It also includes a full run of “The WGC News” newsletter, as well as a run of “Canadian Screenwriter” magazines from White’s time as Guild president. Finally, this subseries includes a USB key of digital files relating to White’s time as WGC president.
Series Five: Kaslo/Kootenays and Mining includes records related to White’s time as a miner, resident of Kaslo, British Columbia, and work with the Kootenay Lake Historical Society. Records in this series include newspaper and magazine clippings and brochures pertaining to home design and home building. It also includes research and copies of archival materials pertaining to the history of mining in British Columbia. It also includes historical publications by the Geological Survey of Canada, and books pertaining to the Kootenays, including a first edition of the 1888 travelogue “A Ramble In British Columbia.”

White, Pete

80th birthday celebrations

File consists of programs, newspaper clippings, and photographs from various events celebrating John Beckwith's 80th birthday, including concerts at the University of Toronto Faculty of Music and the Institute for Canadian Music (ICM).

Loons : [meeting reports]

File consists of reports for a series of informal meetings of the self-titled "Loons," a group of artists, musicians, and writers in Toronto. Members included Harry Freedman, David Partridge, P.K. Page, Sylvia Fraser, Connie Rooke, Jack Behrens, Duncan de Kergommeaux, Alexina Louie, Vera Frenkel, Margaret Laurence, Adele Wiseman, Leon Rooke, Alex Pauk, Carol Bolt, Earle Birney, John Beckwith, Rachel Wyatt, Miriam Waddington, Elizabeth Smart, Helen Weinzweig, John Weinzweig, Harry Somers, Ron Bloore, Tony Eckhart, Gwendolyn MacEwen, Colleen Thibaudeau Reaney, James Reaney, Norman Symonds, Murray Schafer, and Joy Kogawa.

Friends of Canadian Music award

File contains the award certificate and a copy of John Beckwith's speech for the award, which was given by the Canadian Music Centre (CMC) and the Canadian League of Composers (CLC).

Arts and Letters Club award

File consists of the program, correspondence with Robert Aitken, and a copy of Robin Elliott's talk given on the presentation of the Arts and Letters Award to John Beckwith. The program included performances of works by Beckwith, including the world premiere of Sonatina on "Mairi's Wedding". File also includes a copy of John Beckwith's tribute to Ann and Ezra Schabas (October 6, 2019).

Toronto Arts Foundation award

File consists of correspondence, John Beckwith's acceptance speech, and publicity material for the Toronto Arts Foundation award (1994).

University of Guelph honorary doctorate

File consists of correspondence, newspaper clippings, photographs, and a copy of John Beckwith's convocation address at the University of Guelph (February 2, 1995), which was entitled "Will you have any musicke?".

University of Victoria honorary doctorate

File consists of correspondence, programs, newspaper clippings, photographs, and a copy of John Beckwith's convocation address at the University of Victoria (November 27, 1999), which was entitled "Lucky Star."

Taking a stand : festschrift

File contains correspondence and reviews relating to the festchrift in honour of John Beckwith, edited by Timothy J. McGee. File also includes a page of caligraphy advertising the festchrift, which was previously framed.

Queen's University honorary doctorate

File consists of correspondence, programs, photographs, and a copy of John Beckwith's convocation address at Queen's University (May 28, 1998), which was entitled "We blanks are proud people; or, the call to semi-greatness."

P.R.O. Canada Award

File contains John Beckwith's plaque from the Performing Rights Organization of Canada Limited (Société de Droits d'Exécution du Canada Limitée) for "oustanding success in the concert music field".

Musical chairs : Jean A. Chalmers Chair of Canadian Music

File includes correspondence, programs, drafts of speeches, and typescript of poem "Serinette" by James Reaney. "Musical Chairs" was an event in honour of Floyd S. Chalmers, Jean A. Chalmers, and John Beckwith, the inaugural Jean A. Chalmers Professor in Music. Beckwith's talk was titled "Musical Canada: a Contraditiction in Terms?". File also includes annotated copies of his talk "An institute for CanMus."

Member of the Order of Canada

File includes colour photographs with Governor-General Jeanne Sauvé, correspondence, programs, and correspondence. John Beckwith was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada on December 21, 1987.

Awards and honours

Subseries consists of records relating to honours and awards that John Beckwith received during his lifetime, including honorary doctorates from several Canadian universities, Member of the Order of Canada, and various other tributes. Records include medals, certificates, photographs from award ceremonies, related correspondence, and copies of acceptance and convocation speeches given by Beckwith.

Student records

Subseries consists of John Beckwith's certificates, degrees, yearbooks, and select papers from his education at Oak Bay High School (Victoria, British Columbia), Victoria College (Victoria, British Columbia), and the University of Toronto (Bachelor of Music and Master of Music).

The Craigdarroch

File consists of a yearbook from Victoria College, Victoria, British Columbia, of which John Beckwith was the editor. Beckwith was also co-head of the Music Appreciation Club.

Apspects of the frottola

File consists of an essay written by John Beckwith during the first year of his Master of Music at the University of Toronto.


Subseries consists of scrapbooks compiled by John Beckwith, which include programs, musicians' autographs, and newspaper clippings of events that Beckwith was interested in, attended, and performed in. One of the scrapbooks (1943) also includes correspondence from John Beckwith's parents (Howard Beckwith and Margaret Beckwith, nee Dunn) and Peg (Peggy Walton Packard), dated 1938, which was tucked inside the front cover of the volume.

Oak Bay High School

File consists of an autographed yearbook and newspaper clippings relating to John Beckwith's high school (Oak Bay High School in Victoria, British Columbia) and a reunion of the graduating classes.

Memorandums and correspondence regarding Faculty of Music activities

File consists of John Beckwith's general correspondence with the Faculty of Music and the University of Toronto. Correspondents include: Gustav Ciamaga, John Hawkins, John Aitken (editor of The Graduate), Robert Falck, Carl Morey, Andrew Hughes, Colin Eatock, Stephen E. Young, Jo Nunan, Louise Hirbour, Jennifer Waring, Peter Letkemann, Beverley Cavanagh, Madeline Hsu, Glenn Buhr, Elaine Keillor, Patricia Williamson, Robin Harris, John Kruspe, and Paul Pedersen. File includes outgoing and incoming correspondence.

Critical correspondence

Subseries contains unpublished and published letters-to-the editor, including submissions and responses to articles in The Beaver, Bravo, University of Toronto Bulletin, The Globe and Mail, Musicanada (Myra Grimley), Musicworks, National Geographic, Saturday Night, SoundNotes, TSO News, The Torch (University of Victoria), Toronto Star, The Varsity, and Words and Music.

Subseries also contains incoming and outgoing correspondence that John Beckwith designated as "diatribes" or "critical correspondence" with Murray Adaskin, Michael Albano (University of Toronto), Wray Armstrong (Toronto Symphony Orchestra), Bank of Nova Scotia, Elaine Calder (Canadian Opera Company), June Callwood, Care Canada, Adrienne Clarkson (CBC), COC Marketing, COC Publicity, Robertson Cochran (Globe and Mail), James Craig (University of Toronto), Gloria Dent (Guelph Spring Festival), Bronwyn Drainie, Howard Dyck (CBC), Edmonton Opera Guild, Esprit Orchestra, Michael Finlayson (University of Toronto), Fodor's Travel Publications, Jessica Fraser (Toronto Theatre Alliance), Jim Garrard (Toronto Arts Council Foundation), Wayne Gooding (Opera Canada), Michael Goodwin, Joanne Gradzinski (Guelph Spring Festival), Barbara Hall (Toronto City Hall), Dan Heap MP, Linda Hutcheon, William Kilbourn, Alison Latham (Oxford University Press), Murdo Mackinnon, Rick MacMillan (SOCAN), Lynn McDonald MP, Joanne Morrow (Canada Council), Ontario Court, Orchestras Canada, Robert Pritchard (University of Toronto), Doreen Rao (University of Toronto), John Reid (Canadian Music Centre, Calgary), Jeffrey Richards (Lancaster University), Robert Rosevear, St. James Press, Rodney Sharman, Georg and Tanya Tintner, William Toye, (Oxford University Press Canada), University of Toronto Parking Office, Blanche Lemco van Ginkel, Hazel Walker (Toronto Musicians' Association), and Tara Wilson (University of Toronto President's Circle).

Biographical ephemera

Series consists of records from John Beckwith's student years; scrapbooks of concerts Beckwith attended and participated in during this time; awards, tributes, and honours that he received later in his career in recognition of his many contributions to Canadian music; and other general biographical material that Beckwith collected throughout his life.

University of Toronto Faculty of Music correspondence

Subseries consists of correspondence and memorandums between John Beckwith and various individuals at the University of Toronto during Beckwith's tenure at the Faculty of Music. Subseries includes materials relating to one of his early teaching contracts with the Royal Conservatory of Music as well as his appointment as Dean of the Faculty of Music and subsequent correspondence and memorandums as Dean (1970-1977).

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