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Our huge collection of music sees light of day
A SYMBOL of the new, “thriving” Worcester can be found at the city’s old library after being hidden away for years.
Previously stored in the cellar of what is now the Worcester Art Gallery and Museum in Foregate Street was one of the largest collections of music in the country.
The collection, which is worth hundreds of thousands of pounds, includes vocal scores and orchestral music and is available for choirs, orchestras and amateur groups across the country to borrow.
It is believed to have been started by the nieces of Edward Elgar and dates back to the 1930s or 40s.
The contents of the library has now been moved upstairs to a room in the main building after being “as good as shut” for the past two years.
Although owned by Worcestershire County Council, the library is being managed on its behalf by the Elgar School of Music and the English Symphony Orchestra (ESO) as part of a joint initiative.
Peter Sheeran, from the Elgar School of Music, said they hoped to make the music library renowned across the country for English music – everything from Elgar to the Beatles.
Mr Sheeran, who is also the chief executive of the ESO, said: “When people come in here they genuinely enthuse. It’s a transforming thing when people realise they can do something. I think Worcester is thriving and this is a symbol of it.”
The collection does not just include classical music, but also scores for hit musicals and pop.
Nicki Hitchcock, of Worcestershire County Council’s libraries and learning team, said: “The Worcestershire Music Library has one of the largest collections of vocal scores, band, chamber and orchestral music in the country.
“The partnership that began during the summer is very exciting and we believe customers will really benefit from the wealth of experience and expertise the Elgar School of Music have.”
For more information contact the Elgar School of Music on 01905 28613 or view a limited catalogue at at worcestershire.gov.uk