Fonds UBCA-ARC-1068 - Jean Coulthard fonds

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Jean Coulthard fonds

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  • Multiple media

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7.11 m of textual records and other material.

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Biographical history

Jean Coulthard was born in Vancouver and began her musical training with her mother, Jean (née Robinson) Blake Coulthard, at the age of five, and by nine was writing her first compositions. In 1928, Coulthard won a scholarship from the Vancouver Women's Musical Society, enabling her to enrol in the Royal College of Music in London, England and to study under Ralph Vaughan Williams. Upon receiving a Licentiate in Composition from the College (1932), Coulthard returned to Vancouver, where she taught music at St. Anthony's College and Queen's Hall College (1932-1938) while continuing to develop her skills as a composer. In 1935, she married Donald Adams, a noted local designer. Coulthard was asked to join the newly created Department of Music at the University of British Columbia in 1947. She remained on staff as a senior instructor and lecturer until her retirement in 1973. After retirement, Coulthard remained active in education, as a faculty member at the Shawnigan Lake Summer School for the Arts (1974-1976), the Victoria Conservatory (1977), the Banff Centre Composers' Workshop (1978-1979) and the Okanagan Music Festival for Composers (1975-1985). Coulthard has composed extensively for orchestras, chamber groups, piano, voice and choir. Well-known compositions include Cradle Song, Threnody, Canadian Fantasy, Ballade "A Winter's Tale," and her opera Return of the Native. Coulthard has acted as an advocate for the Canadian music community as both a founding member of the Canadian League of Composers (1951-) and as a member and associate composer of the Canadian Music Centre (1959-). She has received numerous prizes and awards, including the Order of Canada (1978), the Order of British Columbia (1994), and honorary degrees from UBC (1988) and Concordia University (1991), in recognition of her significant contributions to Canadian music.

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Scope and content

The fonds consists of Coulthard's incoming family and general correspondence, correspondence from noted English composer Elizabeth Poston, financial records, biographical information, printed material and clippings documenting her involvement in the Canadian and International music communities as an advocate, educator and composer. Also included are original manuscripts of Coulthard's compositions and published and unpublished sound recordings of her work performances. The fonds also contain scrapbooks assembled by Coulthard's mother, Jean Robinson Coulthard, between 1898 and 1929, family photographs, and a photograph album compiled by her father, Dr. Walter Coulthard, depicting the Rossland area (ca. 1902).
Fonds are arranged into two sous-fonds: Jean Coulthard sous-fonds and Coulthard family sous-fonds. Jean Coulthard sous-fonds was organized into the following series: Correspondence (two sub-series, Coulthard-Poston Correspondence and Family Correspondence), Financial and Legal, Biography, Programmes, Publications, Press Clippings, Manuscripts, Sound recordings, Miscellaneous, Photographs, Performance Notes and Remarks, Musical Education and Workshops, Inspirations, Journals and Date Books, and Audio Visual.

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Box 66 is currently restricted

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Physical description

Other materials include 263 photographs, c. 55 sound recordings (78s, LPs, reel-to-reels and cassettes), 8 videocassettes, 2 U-Matic, and 1 Betacam.

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