collection 10 - John Beckwith fonds

Zone d'identification




John Beckwith fonds


  • 1936-2018 (Production)

Niveau de description


Étendue matérielle et support

4 m of textual records and other materials (38 boxes)

Zone du contexte

Nom du producteur


Notice biographique

John Beckwith (born March 9, 1927 in Victoria, British Columbia) is a composer, pianist, author, and teacher. He moved to Toronto in 1945 to study piano with Alberto Guerrero at the Royal Conservatory. He also studied composition in Paris with Nadia Boulanger (1950-1951) and has a Mus.B. (1947) and Mus.M. (1961) from the University of Toronto, where he studied with John Weinzweig, among others. He began lecturing part-time at the University of Toronto in 1952, taught full-time from 1955 to 1990, and was dean of the Faculty of Music from 1970 to 1977. He was also the director for the Institute for Canadian Music at the Faculty of Music and held the Jean A. Chalmers professorship in Canadian music.

His over 150 compositions include four operas, orchestral, chamber, solo and choral works, and he has published critical and scholarly articles in Canadian music studies. He was also a staff (1953-1955) and freelance (1955-1965) script-writer and programmer for Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) music series) and a critic and columnist for the Toronto Star (1959-1962, 1963-1965).

Beckwith holds five honorary doctorates from Canadian Universities, and received the Canadian Music Council’s annual medal (1972) and the Composer of the Year citation (1984), the Toronto Arts award for music (1995), and the Diplome d’honneur of the Canadian Conference of the Arts (1996). He was named a member of the Order of Canada in 1987.

Histoire archivistique

Source immédiate d'acquisition ou de transfert

The John Beckwith fonds is made up of multiple accruals, received from the composer between 1990 and 2020. The source of each file or item is identified at the file and item level.

Zone du contenu et de la structure

Portée et contenu

Fonds consists of records created by John Beckwith during his career, predominantly relating to his compositions. Materials include sketches, drafts, final copies, texts, performance records, and related correspondence for most of his works, as well as programs and press notices, and other personal and professional documents. Records include correspondence with other musicians, both personal and professional; materials created through his work with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation; lecture notes from his time at the University of Toronto and other presentations; and documents pertaining to his various awards and honours.

Évaluation, élimination et calendrier de conservation


Further accruals are expected.

Mode de classement

Fonds arranged by file and/or item type and contents in six series: Compositions (A); Librettos, texts, performance records (B); Other activities (C); Other correspondence (D); Biographical (E); and Recordings (F). Within each series, records are identified by file.

Zone des conditions d'accès et d'utilisation

Conditions d’accès

Unrestricted access, including display rights and consultation rights. Archival records may be viewed in the Olnick Rare Book Room at the University of Toronto Music Library.

Conditions de reproduction

Copyright is retained by the artist.

Langue des documents

  • anglais

Écriture des documents

Notes de langue et graphie

Caractéristiques matérielle et contraintes techniques

Instruments de recherche

Instrument de recherche téléversé

Zone des sources complémentaires

Existence et lieu de conservation des originaux

Existence et lieu de conservation des copies

Unités de description associées

To borrow scores and parts, and listen online to archival recordings, visit the Canadian Music Centre.

Descriptions associées

Zone des notes


Previously titled "Archives Collection 10: John Beckwith." Reference code (10) removed from the title of the collection July 30, 2019.

Identifiant(s) alternatif(s)


Mots-clés - Sujets

Mots-clés - Lieux

Mots-clés - Noms

Mots-clés - Genre

Identifiant de la description

Identifiant du service d'archives


Règles et/ou conventions utilisées


  • anglais



Zone des entrées

Sujets associés

Personnes et organismes associés

Genres associés

Lieux associés