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Stravinsky, Igor, 1882-1971
Princeton University. Library. Special Collections
Igor Stravinsky Collection
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1 box and 0.2 linear feet
Storage Note:
Firestone Library (mss): Box 1


Consists of correspondence and documents relating to the Princeton commission of Requiem Canticles by Russian composer Igor Stravinsky, considered by many in both the West and his native land to be the most influential composer of 20th-century music.

Collection Description & Creator Information


The collection consists of correspondence and documents relating to the Princeton commission of Requiem Canticles by Stravinsky. Correspondents include Princeton University President Robert Goheen, Joseph Lynch, Augustus P. Mack, Jr., Ricardo A. Mesters, Armine T. Montapert, and Stanley Seeger. The orchestral score, dated 1966, was dedicated to the memory of Helen Buchanan Seeger. The documents include the original and drafts of the agreement between Princeton University and Stravinsky regarding the commission of the composition. Also included is an announcement of the first performance of the requiem by Stravinsky on October 8, 1966, at McCarter Theatre in Princeton, New Jersey, which was conducted by Stravinsky and Robert Craft.


Arranged chronologically by year.

Collection Creator Biography:

Stravinsky, Igor, 1882-1971

Igor Fyodorovitch Stravinsky (1882-1971) was born in Russia, near St. Petersburg, grew up in a musical atmosphere , and studied with Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. He had his first important opportunity in 1909, when the impresario Sergei Diaghilev heard his music, and went on to commission Stravinksy's first ballet. During World War I, Stravinsky sought refuge in Switzerland; after the armistice, he moved to France, his home until the onset of World War II, when he came to the United States. During his years in the United States, he lived outside Los Angeles, and was assisted by his young protégé, Robert Craft. In 1962 he accepted an invitation to return to Russia for a series of concerts, but remained an emigre firmly based in the West. He died in New York City on April 6, 1971, at the age of 89 and was buried in Venice on the cemetery island of San Michele. His grave is close to the tomb of his early collaborator, Diaghilev. He was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of the century, and he has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In his 1936 autobiography, Chronicles of My Life, written with the help of Alexis Roland-Manuel, Stravinsky included his infamous statement that "music is, by its very nature, essentially powerless to express anything at all."

Collection History


The papers were the gift of Stanley J. Seeger in December 9, 1992 (AM1993-84).

Archival Appraisal Information:

No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information:

This collection was processed by Dina Britain on September 27, 2007. Finding aid written by Lauren Kustner on November 12, 2007. Folder Inventory added by Jameson Creager '2015 in 2013.

Access & Use

Access Restrictions:

Collection is open for research use.

Conditions for Reproduction and Use:

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. No further photoduplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to RBSC Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.

Credit this material:

Igor Stravinsky Collection; Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Permanent URL:
Firestone Library
One Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
(609) 258-3184

Find More

Related Material:

Stravinsky's original autograph music composition, access to which is restricted, can be found in the Miscellaneous Bound Manuscripts Collection (C0199, no. 1009). Readers are to use a preservation photocopy. Permission of the curator of manuscripts is required to access the original manuscript.

Subject Terms:
McCarter Theatre Center (Princeton, N.J.).
Requiem Canticles.
Requiems -- Performances -- New Jersey -- Princeton -- 20th century.
Genre Terms:
Correspondence -- 20th century
Princeton university
Goheen, Robert F. (Robert Francis), 1919-2008
Seeger, Stanley J.