Records of the TCU Department of Ballet and Modern Dance
Collection Scope and Content Summary
Scrapbooks, photographs, negatives, TCU and non-TCU ballet programs, dance magazines, dance step books, posters, and TCU performance videotapes from 1914-1996 document the TCU Department of Ballet and Modern Dance. The collection is divided into five series: I. Scrapbooks, 1950-1982; II. Photographs, 1950-1984; III. Printed Material, 1914-1996; IV. Fort Worth Ballet Association Material, 1960-1972; V. Ballet Videotapes, 1950-1964.
The first series, Scrapbooks, 1950-1982, includes scrapbooks made by the Ballet and Modern Dance department. The books include pictures, newspaper clippings, dance programs, and letters documenting the department’s achievements and performances.
Photographs, 1950-1984, include images of practices, performances, and individual dancers and faculty of the department. Negatives of dance photos for the press are also a part of the series.
The next series, Printed Material, 1914-1996, contains TCU dance programs, oversized promotional posters, and pictures from the 1950s to the 1980s. Non-TCU material includes playbills from world-wide ballet conservatories and one box of dance magazines from the 1920s to the 1980s. Of particular interest are four dancing step books: Manual of Dancing Steps (1914), Congregational Dancing in Christian Workshop (1972), Folk Dance Notebook (1973), and Matthias the Painter (undated).
Fort Worth Ballet Association Material, 1960-1972, has some of the association’s financial records, meeting minutes, letters, brochures, and press releases. The series has a folder of detailed publication material for TCU’s Coppélia performance in 1967.
The last series, Ballet Videotapes, 1950-1964, only includes three VHS tapes of the dance department’s earliest performances.
- 1914-1996 inclusive, 1950-1984 bulk
- Majority of material found in 1950-1984
Conditions Governing Access
In 1949, Texas Christian University offered the first Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ballet in the United States. Under the guidance of David Preston, between 1949 and 1963, the ballet program held recitals twice a year. The Ballet’s students also performed within the Fort Worth Civic Opera Ballet. Members of the ballet have gone into professional work, and former students earned scholarships to train at Juilliard Performing Arts Conservatory. The department’s second chair, Fernando Schaffenburg, replaced Preston in 1964. During his tenure, he invited Jerry Bywaters Cochran to join the faculty. She inaugurated the modern dance program at TCU and helped create the BFA in Modern Dance. In 1976, a Master of Fine Arts for Ballet and Modern Dance was added to the curriculum. The department continued to expand under the guidance of Stephanie Woods Rand and James Clouser in the 1980s. Since the department’s inception, its faculty participated as directors of the Fort Worth Ballet Association and helped organize the Southwest Regional Ballet Festival.
14.00 Linear feet
Scrapbooks, photos, negatives, TCU and non-TCU ballet programs, dance magazines, dance step books, posters, and TCU performance videotapes from 1914-1996. Includes documents of the Fort Worth Ballet Association.
Arranged in five series: I. Scrapbooks, 1950-1982; II. Photographs, 1950-1984; III. Printed Material, 1914-1996; IV. Fort Worth Ballet Association Material, 1960-1972; V. Ballet Videotapes, 1950-1964.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
- Guide to the Records of the TCU Department of Ballet and Modern Dance
- Compiled by Miriam E. Villanueva