Yale University Library News

Treasures of Guitar and Lute Music from the Gilmore Music Library

Woman playing the lute
March 9, 2018

The Gilmore Music Library holds many remarkable scores, books, and images of guitar and lute music. Our online exhibit, Treasures of Guitar and Lute Music from the Gilmore Music Library, spans more than 400 years. It includes two remarkable lute works from the late 16th and early 17th centuries: a treatise by Vincenzo Galilei (the father of the scientist Galileo Galilei) and a rare print of John Dowland’s Lachrimae. 

The guitar makes its appearance with a late 17th-century treatise by Gaspar Sanz. From the 19th-century, we have a letter from the composer and guitarist Mauro Giuliani. The 20th-century is represented by a guitar arrangement by Andrés Segovia, the most celebrated classical guitarist of his era, a study by the renowned Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos, and a composition by Jack Vees, the director of Yale’s Center for Studies in Music Technology. Finally, we have selected three striking images from the library’s large collection of guitar iconography.

This exhibit was planned in conjunction with the 2018 Yale Guitar Extravaganza, sponsored by the Yale School of Music, but unfortunately, that had to be canceled. The next Guitar Extravaganza is now planned for the 2019-2020 concert season.