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Music Archives at the National Library of Canada

MUS 200

Ernesto Barbini fonds.  - 1894-1984.  - 3.50 m of textual records.  - 880 photographs.  - 882 slides.  - 761 negatives.  - 92 audio tape reels.  - 30 audio discs.  - 5 audio tape cassettes.  - 11 film reels.  - 1 videocassette. 

Biographical sketch
A conductor born in Italy, Ernesto Barbini settled in Toronto in 1953 and joined the Royal Conservatory of Music there, where he founded the Collegium Musicum.  From 1953 until his retirement in 1975, he worked as a coach and conductor for the Royal Conservatory Opera School (which in 1969 became a department of the Faculty of Music of the University of Toronto).  He conducted a number of operas in the United States, where he was assistant conductor with the Metropolitan Opera from 1946 to 1952.  In Canada, he conducted mainly for the Canadian Opera Company, works such as Madama Butterfly, La Traviata, Rigoletto, Aïda, The Barber of Seville and his famous Faust.  In 1975 he was appointed musical director of the Manitoba Opera. 

Scope and content
The fonds consists of records illustrating Barbini's career as a conductor:  correspondence; diplomas; diaries; writings; programmes; posters; clippings; annotated music books; annotated published scores (featuring a Verdi autograph) of operas, chamber music, chorales and string ensembles; manuscripts of Barbini arrangements; photographs of Barbini, members of his family, travels and concerts; sound recordings, films and videocassette of Barbini as conductor. 

Immediate source of acquisition:  acquired from the Ernesto Barbini Estate, through the National Archives of Canada, in 1991. 

Restrictions:  none. 

Finding aids:  provisional description. 

Proactive Disclosure