The New York Philharmonic has received a $2.4 million grant from the Leon Levy Foundation to complete the digitization of its extensive Archives, beginning with its founding in 1842 through to the present day. When completed, the New York Philharmonic Leon Levy Digital Archives will contain almost 3 million pages, comprising all documents in the New York Philharmonic Archives — including correspondence, marked scores and parts, contracts, and Board minutes — from 1842 through 1970, as well as all public documents — including marketing materials, press releases, and annual reports — from 1970 through today.
The Digital Archives’ infrastructure will also be modified to integrate born-digital documents created today, as well as additional technological enhancements. Launched in February 2011, the Digital Archives currently includes historic material from 1943—70 including programs, marked scores and orchestral parts, business documents, photos, and more. The completion of the New York Philharmonic Leon Levy Digital Archives will create one of the world’s most comprehensive online collections documenting a single cultural institution, as well as provide the structure for growth into the future.
All material from the New York Philharmonic’s inaugural season, 1842–43, is now available online. Highlights include the first annual report detailing the Orchestra’s finances from the inaugural season, consisting of three concerts, and the contents of its orchestra library (27 items); the printed program from the Orchestra’s inaugural concert; the first-edition score of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony used in the inaugural concert; the New York Philharmonic’s constitution, signed in April 1842; the list of audience members who subscribed to the inaugural season; an early concert review from The Albion; and photographs of founding Music Director Ureli Corelli Hill.