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Records of the Al Glaser Recording Orchestra

 Collection
Identifier: RG 1360

Scope and Content Note

This collection relates to Al Glaser's career as a bandleader, musician and musical composer and arranger. Materials include original compositions and arrangements by Glaser and printed sheet music of Jewish, Hungarian and Romanian music. The unidentified handwritten sheet music may have been arranged or composed by Al Glaser or may have been collected or written out by Glaser for use with his orchestra.

Dates

  • 1900-1947, undated

Language of Materials

The collection is in musical notation. The song titles are in a variety of languages, including English, French, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Romanian, and Yiddish.

Access Restrictions

The collection is open to the public. Permission to publish part or parts of the collection must be obtained in writing from the YIVO Archives.

Use Restrictions

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection. For more information, contact:

YIVO Archives, YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011

email: archives@yivo.cjh.org

Biographical Note

Jewish bandleader, composer, arranger, producer, and musician Adolph (Al) Glaser was born in Czernowitz (Chernivtsi, Ukraine) in 1898. He began his musical training under his father, who was the conductor of the Staatstheater Orchestra in Czernowitz. In 1916, Glaser was inducted into the Austrian army. He was taken prisoner by Russian forces and ended up in Irkutsk, Siberia, where he performed with the prisoner of war orchestra. In 1918, after World War I, Glaser began touring with a Soviet opera company, which he left while they were performing in Shanghai. Glaser immigrated to the United States in 1922, where he built his reputation as a bandleader. In 1938, he produced an album of Yiddish dance music, Al Glaser's Bukovina Kapeleye, using the top klezmer musicians of the time, including Dave Tarras, the Epstein Brothers and Benny Zuger. Al Glaser died in 1982.

Extent

0.5 Linear Feet

2 Boxes : 3" flat boxes

Abstract

This collection contains original compositions and printed and handwritten sheet music collected by Al Glaser as well as Glaser’s own arrangements of traditional Hungarian, Romanian and Jewish music.

Arrangement

The materials are arranged in one alphabetical series. Musical titles are written according to whatever spelling or languages appear on the sheet music, for example Rumanian Medley and Roumanian Selection. Some titles are in English and then German, such as To Spring (An den Fruehling), while others are in Yiddish transliteration and then English, such as Wus Geven is Geven un Nitu (Memories of Days Gone By). Additionally, folder 33, Potpourri of Russian Favorites, and 34, Potpury of Russian Favorites, may refer to the same music but the titles are spelled as they appear on the sheet music and have been alphabetized accordingly. Some folders contain a single piece of music or a fragment while others contain multiple parts and copies from a musical score.

Acquisition Information

Al Glaser’s children Bonnie Shirakhoon, Jeff Glaser and Doris Gutnick donated the collection to the YIVO Archives in 1985.

Related Material

The Sidney Krum Jewish Music and Yiddish Theater Memorial Collections, including the Max and Frieda Weinstein Archives of Recorded Sound, contain thousands of pieces of printed and handwritten sheet music and scores, as well as recordings of klezmer, liturgical, popular, and theatrical music. RG 112, the Music Collection, consists of published and unpublished works of all sorts of music, as well as programs, clippings, photographs, and other documents about Jewish music in general. The YIVO Archives also contains the personal papers of individual composers and conductors and collections of published music are also available in the YIVO Library.

Separated Material

Recordings of the Al Glaser Recording Orchestra are in YIVO’s Max and Frieda Weinstein Archives of Recorded Sound. To access these, please contact: soundarchives@yivo.cjh.org

Processing information

Processed by Rachel S. Harrison in October 2013, made possible by the Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives Grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources through the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support "Illuminating Hidden Collections at the Center for Jewish History."
Title
Guide to the Records of the Al Glaser Recording Orchestra 1900-1947, undated RG 1360
Status
In Progress
Author
Processed by Rachel S. Harrison in 2013, made possible by the Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives Grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources through the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support "Illuminating Hidden Collections at the Center for Jewish History."
Date
©2013
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Description is in English.

Repository Details

Part of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research Repository

Contact:
15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States