Letters of Ferrucio Busoni

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Correspondence of Ferrucio Benvenuto Busoni (1866-1924), composer.

Administrative / Biographical History

Ferrucio Benvenuto Busoni (1866-1924) was born in Italy, the son of an Italian clarinettist and a pianist of German descent. After being trained by his mother he completed his education at Vienna and Leipzig. In 1889 he became professor of piano at Helsingfor, and from there he moved to Moscow and later the United States. From 1894 to 1914 (and again from 1920 till his death) he lived in Berlin. During World War I he lived in Zurich. He married Gerda Strand in 1890.

Busoni was a pianist of considerable repute and also conducted including works by his contemporaries. His major works comprise an opera unfinished in his lifetime Doktor Faust and two further smaller operas. He composed numerous pieces, mainly for the piano, and also made transcripts of Bach's organ works for piano.

Reference: University of Birmingham, Special Collections Department, Online Archive Catalogue (http://calmview.bham.ac.uk/). Accessed May 2002.

Conditions Governing Access

Open. Access to all registered researchers.

Acquisition Information

The University Librarian's Annual Report notes that this gift was "collected by Mr N. Debenham of Aldeburgh" and that Dr Waterhouse was instrumental in arranging the gift. Receipt of this gift was reported in the University Librarian's Annual Report, 1982/83.

Other Finding Aids

A catalogue to file level is available in electronic format on the University of Birmingham website at http://calmview.bham.ac.uk/ A paper catalogue is available in the Special Collections Department and at the National Register of Archives in London.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the University Archivist, Special Collections. Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Special Collections will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Related Material

University of Birmingham Information Services, Special Collections Department also holds other collections relating to musicians and composers.