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Dance Research at the Library of Congress

Music Division

Photograph of original Broadway cast production of On the Town. 1944. Leonard Bernstein Collection. Library of Congress Music Division.

The largest number of special collections related to classical and modern Western dance in the Library of Congress are housed in the Music Division. Special collections related to dance and the performing arts fall into three large categories:

  • personal papers of dancers, choreographers, stage managers, and production designers
  • organizational records of dance companies and foundations
  • materials collected by individuals about dance, dancers, or dance companies

Use the tabs below to find selected titles of collections related to dance. You can also view a complete list of special collections on the Performing Arts Reading Room website. The links are for finding aids—contextual and descriptive documents of collection contents—or collection-level catalog records if finding aids are in the process of production. Both finding aids and catalog records contain summaries of collection contents.

Finding aids and catalog records for special collections indicate transfers of audio-visual materials to the Motion Picture, Broadcasting & Recorded Sound Division.

  • In online finding aids, select the tab "Using This Collection." Under the heading "Administrative History," the subheading "Transfers" will contain any information.
  • In online catalog records, transfer information appears next to the heading "Notes."

Stay up to date with new acquisitions and finding aids through the dance category of our Performing Arts Blog In the Muse and by searching across all finding aids at the Library of Congress.

Special Collections With Dance-Related Materials

ML 95: Manuscript Correspondence

In addition to special collections, the Music Division holds cataloged correspondence. The select list below assists dance researchers to locate the catalog records for correspondence not part of the special collections above. You can also browse the online catalog by the call number ML95 to stay up to date with new acquisitions.