Conference: Documenting Musical Sources in Latin America

The conference Documenting Musical Sources in Latin America will take place as a peripheral event of the annual congress of the Gesellschaft für Musikforschung in Mainz.

RISM has invited speakers from Latin America to share information about the state of musical sources in their countries.

Location: Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Literatur, Geisteswissenschaftliche Klasse
Geschwister-Scholl-Str. 2
55131 Mainz

Date: Thursday, September 15, 2016, 10:00-17:00

The conference is free and open to the public.

The exchange of cultural assets - in our case, musical works - between Europe and Latin America is a field of study that is still in its infancy. The state of knowledge was analyzed and key desiderata were identified as part of the conference Vokalpolyphonie zwischen Alter und Neuer Welt: Musikalische Austauschprozesse zwischen Europa und Lateinamerika im 16. und 17. Jahrhundert (Vocal Polyphony between the Old and New World: Processes of Musical Exchange between Europe and Latin America in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries), which was organized by the Johann Gutenberg-Universität Mainz and took place in June 2015. The considerable transfer of European musical works to Latin America and the associated enormous influence on indigenous musicians and composers are apparent.

More comprehensive exploration is precluded by the fact that to a great extent sources are inadequately cataloged, and even in large libraries processing and cataloging is still in the early stages. At the same time, interest in recognizing music materials as part of cultural heritage has been observed in the past few years in countries such as Brazil, Chile, Cuba, and Mexico. This has led to such materials becoming accessible for research. In order to address this situation, the processes of cataloging sources and exchanging already collected data with the International Inventory of Musical Sources (RISM) should be organized so as to establish the requirements for investigating sources as well as analyzing the means of dissemination and the associated reception of European music. Follow-up projects in cooperation with Latin American research institutions are planned.

At the conference, respected musicologists and librarians from throughout Latin America will report on the current state of describing sources in their countries and the state of research on cultural exchange. In addition, the organizers will discuss continued progress and arrange ways of exchanging data.


Chairs: Klaus Pietschmann | Mainz
Cristina Urchueguía | Berne
Klaus Keil | Frankfurt am Main

Greeting and introduction from the chairs


Themes and goals of the conference



  • Leonardo Waisman | Córdoba, Argentinia: Spanish-American Colonial Musical Sources: Catalogues and Studies
  • Cecilia Astudillo Rojas | Santiago de Chile: Historical Music Scores in Chile and their Documentation
  • Egberto Bermúdez Cujar | Bogotá: Documenting Popular Music sources in Latin America: The case of Colombia
  • Edgar Alejandro Calderón Alcantar | Morelia, Mexico: Music Documentation Projects in Morelia
  • Luis Díaz Santana | Zacatecas, Mexico: The Music Archives of the Churches of Zacatecas
  • Lucero Enríquez Rubio | Mexico City: Cataloging a Peripheral Cathedral Music Archive vis à vis RISM Protocol
  • Miriam Escudero | Cuba: Management of Historical-Documentary Heritage of Music in Cuba
  • André Guerra Cotta | Rio das Ostras, Brazil: Brazilian Musical Heritage: An Overview and Some Brief Considerations
  • John G. Lazos | Mexico/Canada: José Antonio Gómez y Olguín (1805-1876) and his Music Catalogue
  • Beatriz Magalhães Castro | Brazil: Musical Patrimony and Source Studies in Brazil: References, Materials, and Research Tools for the Digital Age
  • Piotr Nawrot | Chiquitos, Bolivia: Musical Sources in the Moxos Missions
  • Pablo Sotuyo Blanco | Bahia, Brazil: The RISM Brazil Database: Concept, Research, and Development
  • Federica Riva | Florence, Italy: On the Way Towards an International Libretto Project: An Overview of Collections in Cuba

Muscat presentation

  • Martina Falletta, Jennifer Ward | Frankfurt am Main: Muscat: A New Program for Music Documentation

Roundtable discussion of possible further steps