San Francisco Symphony posts first installment of free, searchable archive of program books, from 1911 to 1923

Posted on: March 18, 2021

“From the very beginning, 110 years ago, the San Francisco Symphony published program books for each concert being held in the Cort Theater. And now, these archival gems are available to the public,” writes Janos Gereben in Tuesday’s (3/16) San Francisco Classical Voice. “SF Symphony Communications Manager Tatyana Filatova forwards this explanation from Kristin Lipska, SF Symphony’s digital and media archivist: ‘These 12 bound volumes of programs from 1911-1923 were digitized by a state program, California Revealed, at no cost to the SFS.… A requirement of the project is that digitized items are made freely available online. We selected the first 12 seasons of programs…. We hope to continue to nominate additional seasons of programs to be digitized.’ … The programs were OCR’d (Optical Character Recognition) which means the text is searchable…. Maestro No. 1, Henry Hadley, … conducted the SF Symphony in 1911, with soloist Fritz Kriesler, at the Cort Theater. And don’t overlook San Francisco music history even before 1911…. The small Wild West town of San Francisco in the 1850s had symphonic music and opera before paved roads or indoor plumbing.”