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The McHenry Library on the UCSC campus. Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

The physical archives of Other Minds are now housed with the special collections at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Over 150 boxes containing programs, artwork, photographs, scores, correspondence, business papers and tapes from such renowned composers as Laurie Anderson, Pierre Boulez, Anthony Braxton, Elliott Carter, Brian Eno, Philip Glass, Meredith Monk, Pauline Oliveros, Terry Riley, and Ned Rorem have already been transferred to Special Collections and Archives at McHenry Library on the UC Santa Cruz campus.

The collection also includes about 4,000 reel-to reel, cassette, DAT, and video tapes of interviews and live performances from KPFA, entrusted to Other Minds, as well as more than 30 years of Cabrillo Festival (Santa Cruz) performance and interview tapes. The recordings—all one-of-a-kind documents, mostly made on reel-to-reel tape—cover the period between 1949 and 1995. KPFA, America’s first listener-sponsored radio station, founded in 1949, had a long history of hiring composers as music directors, beginning in the early 50’s with Robert Erickson, teacher of Terry Riley, Morton Subotnick, Pauline Oliveros, and others who went on to invent minimal music and live electronic music.

Charles Amirkhanian, the Executive and Artistic Director of Other Minds: We wanted to give the archives to a place where we could be assured that the contents will be safe and used by music faculty and researchers. The music faculty of UC Santa Cruz shares my interest in the line of composers stemming from the experimentalism of Henry Cowell, John Cage, and Lou Harrison—composers who re-imagined every parameter of music, rather than creating their music strictly within confines of the Western European classical tradition. Living and working far from New York and Europe, these composers were free to absorb influences from non-Western culture that ushered in the first wave of a distinctly American music.

Here’s a link to the press release announcing our donation to the UCSC.

The Online Archive of California (OAC) provides free public access to detailed descriptions of primary resource collections maintained by more than 200 contributing institutions including libraries, special collections, archives, historical societies, and museums throughout California and collections maintained by the 10 University of California (UC) campuses.

Here’s a link to our collection on the OAC.

Video – Charles Amirkhanian interview

A conversation between Dr. Amy C. Beal, Faculty of Music at UC Santa Cruz; and Charles Amirkhanian, Executive & Artistic Director of Other Minds. Presented by Ph.D. Candidate and Teaching Fellow Madison Heying. Recorded at UC Santa Cruz, June 12, 2018.

Photos – Opening Reception

Photos by Charles Amirkhanian

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