Old Dominion University Libraries

Allan Blank Papers, 1958-2009 | Music Special Collections

By Jessica Mirasol in January 2010

Collection Overview

Title: Allan Blank Papers, 1958-2009

Collection Identifier: DCR MG 5

ID: 00.1/DCR MG 5

Primary Creator: Blank, Allan (1925-2013)

Extent: 40.0 Boxes


This collection has been organized into the following series:

I. Original Compositions

II. Sketches and Sketchbooks

III. Correspondence

IV. Programs

V. Publicity

VI. Personal and Professional Reference Materials

VII. Videos and Recordings

Date Acquired: 00/00/1999. More info below under Accruals.

Subjects: 20th century music, Acoustic guitar, American String Teachers Association, Associated Music Publishers, Association for the Promotion of New Music, Baritone (Musical instrument), Bass clarinet, Bassoon, Blank, Allan, 1925-, Boosey & Hawkes Music Publishers, Brass quartet, Brass quintet, Carl Fischer Inc, Clarinet, Cornell University, Dorn Publications, Double bass, Earnestly Music, Edition Pro Nova, English horn, Euphonium, Falls House Press, Flute, Hampton Roads Region (Va.), Harp, HoneyRock, Horn (Musical Instrument), Jazz band series, Music for Percussion, Inc., National Endowment for the Arts, Nichols Music, Oboe, Old Dominion University, Opera--Juvenile, Operas, Organ (Musical Instrument), Percussion, Piccolo, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Richmond (Va.), Roncorp Inc., Saxophone, Seesaw Music, Smith Publications, String quartet, String trio, Symphonic band series, Theodore Presser Company, Trombone, Trumpet, Tuba, Viola, Violin, Violoncello, Virginia Commission on the Arts, Virginia Commonwealth Universtiy, Virginia Music Educators Association, Vocal Music - - 20th century, Wind quintets (Bassoon, Clarinet, Flute, Horn, Oboe) - - 20th century

Languages: English, French, German

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The Allan Blank Papers consist primarily of scores (mainly in manuscript and facsimile formats) and materials related directly to his significant compositions and published materials, including programs, reviews and recordings. His compositions encompass a wide range of instrumentation and format. His works include pieces for a solo instrument, full orchestra, chamber ensemble, voice, music for children, and opera. Materials in this collection also document some of Mr. Blank’s personal and professional interests.

Biographical Note

Allan Blank was born in New York in 1925. His early musical training was on the violin, and he attended the High School of Music and Art where his interest in conducting and composition was fostered. He furthered his studies at the Juilliard School of Music (1945-1947); Washington Square College (B.A., 1948); University of Minnesota (M.A., l950) and the University of Iowa. He was a violinist with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (1950-1952) and has taught at a number of schools and universities.

He was Professor Emeritus at Virginia Commonwealth University where he taught from 1978-1996. He has a number of published works distributed among the following publishers: Carl Fischer, Theodore Presser, Seesaw Music, Music For Percussion, Dorn Publications, Nichols Music, Roncorp Inc., Falls House Press, HoneyRock, Boosey and Hawkes, Smith Publications, Association for the Promotion of New Music, Associated Music Publishers, American String Teachers Association, Edition Pro Nova and Earnestly Music.

Blank's awards include First Prize in the George Eastman Competition (1983), sponsored by the Eastman School of Music for his Duo for Bassoon and Piano; a grant (l983) from the National Endowment for the Arts in support of his one-act opera, The Magic Bonbons; three commissions (l979, l988, and l991) from the Virginia Music Teachers Association and two commissions to write music for the Virginia Shakespeare Festival at Williamsburg. In 1988 he won both the Eric Satie Mostly Tonal Award for his string trio, Fantasy on Cantillation Motives, and the Annual Choral Competition Contest, sponsored by the Chautauqua Chamber Singers, for his setting called Poor Richard's Almanack. In l989 he was a winner in the Lind Solo Competition, sponsored by Cornell University, and in 1990 he was awarded a grant from the Virginia Commission of the Arts for a Concerto for Clarinet and String Orchestra. Allan Blank is listed in a number of biographical references, including The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians.  He died November 12, 2013 in Bon Air, Virginia.

Subject/Index Terms

20th century music
Acoustic guitar
American String Teachers Association
Associated Music Publishers
Association for the Promotion of New Music
Baritone (Musical instrument)
Bass clarinet
Blank, Allan, 1925-
Boosey & Hawkes Music Publishers
Brass quartet
Brass quintet
Carl Fischer Inc
Cornell University
Dorn Publications
Double bass
Earnestly Music
Edition Pro Nova
English horn
Falls House Press
Hampton Roads Region (Va.)
Horn (Musical Instrument)
Jazz band series
Music for Percussion, Inc.
National Endowment for the Arts
Nichols Music
Old Dominion University
Organ (Musical Instrument)
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
Richmond (Va.)
Roncorp Inc.
Seesaw Music
Smith Publications
String quartet
String trio
Symphonic band series
Theodore Presser Company
Virginia Commission on the Arts
Virginia Commonwealth Universtiy
Virginia Music Educators Association
Vocal Music - - 20th century
Wind quintets (Bassoon, Clarinet, Flute, Horn, Oboe) - - 20th century

Administrative Information

Repository: Music Special Collections

Accruals: Additions were made in 2000, 2009, and 2010.

Access Restrictions: Materials are available for room use only.

Use Restrictions: Copyright has not been assigned to the University Library. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the University Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the University Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

Physical Access Note: Original reel to reel recordings are not available for use.

Acquisition Source: Allan Blank

Acquisition Method: Gift

Preferred Citation: [Identification of item], Box Number [insert number], Allan Blank Papers, Old Dominion University Libraries, F. Ludwig Diehn Composers Room, Diehn Fine and Performing Arts Center, Norfolk, VA

Processing Information: The collection was processed by Jessica Mirasol in 2010.

Finding Aid Revision History: Major revisions to this finding aid occurred in 2010 after new additions were processed.

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Original Compositions],
[Series 2: Sketches and Sketchbooks],
[Series 3: Correspondence],
[Series 4: Programs],
[Series 5: Publicity],
[Series 6: Personal and Professional Reference Materials],
[Series 7: Videos and Recordings],

Series 1: Original Compositions
Allan Blank has written a long list of musical compositions for a variety of musicians. He has written for traditional vocal, instrumental, and mixed ensembles as well as for more uncommon mixed ensembles. The works in this series have been divided based on instrumentation.
Sub-Series 1: Works for Chorus
Box 1
Folder 1: American Folio SATB
Folder 2: buy me an ounce and I’ll sell you pound SATB with piano
Folder 3: Four Chinese Poems for Sopranos and Altos
Folder 4: The Frogs SSAATTBB
Folder 5: I Am a Rose SSAA
Folder 6: Lines by Horace SATB
Folder 7: Lines from Proverbs for Mixed Chorus
Folder 8: Madrigal for Chorus and Piano
Folder 9: Maggie, Milly, Molly, and May SSA
Folder 10: Maggie, Milly, Molly, and May SSA
Folder 11: Tell me Where is Fancy Bred SATB
Folder 12: Peace Cantata SATB and Piano
Folder 13: Poor Richard’s Almanack SATB (a cappella)
Folder 14: Three Nouns SATB (a cappella)
Sub-Series 2: Solo Works
Sub-Series 1: Vocal
Box 1
Folder 14: Cupid and Campaspe
Folder 15: Don Quixote Tenor and Piano
Folder 16: Envoi
Folder 17: Four Poems by Walt Whitman Baritone and Piano
Folder 18: Four Yeats Songs
Folder 19: I carry your heart with me Treble Voice and Piano
Folder 20: In Just
Folder 21: The Legs
Folder 22: Let All the Horses Go Free Male Voice and Piano
Folder 23: A Noiseless Patient Spider Bass-Baritone and Piano
Folder 24: Of Mere Being Soprano and Piano
Folder 25: Parable
Folder 26: The Pebble Soprano or Mezzo and Piano
Folder 27: The Pleasures of Merely Circulating
Folder 28: Some Funnies and Poems Narrator and Piano
Folder 29: Somewhere I Have Never Travelled
Folder 30: Song Treble Voice and Piano
Folder 31: Song Cycle Mezzo and Piano
Box 2
Folder 1: Sonnet 43
Folder 2: Spanish Johnny
Folder 3: To My Dear and Loving Husband Soprano or Mezzo and Piano
Folder 4: Valerye Treble Voice and Piano
Folder 5: Vicissitudes
Folder 6: Voices Mezzo and Piano
Folder 7: The Way of the Water-Hyacinth Soprano and Piano
Folder 8: When I Was One-and-Twenty Tenor and Piano
Sub-Series 2: Keyboard
Box 2
Folder 9: Adonay Yom Lekha (O Lord! On This Day) Organ
Folder 10: The Angel with the Too Little Wings Piano
Folder 11: Four Easy Pieces Piano
Folder 12: In Memorium (Arthur White) Piano
Folder 13: Meditation Organ
Folder 14: Meditation for Piano
Folder 15: Music for Piano
Folder 16: Pour Vous Piano
Folder 17: Re-Statement of Romance Piano
Folder 18: A Short Invention for Piano
Folder 19: Six Studies for Piano (One hand-Left or right)
Folder 20: A Suite of Bagatelles Keyboard
Sub-Series 3: Strings
Box 2
Folder 21: Dualisms Violin and Organ
Folder 22: Duo Concertante Violin and Piano
Folder 23: Elegy for Violin and Organ
Folder 24: Four Studies for Solo Violin (on each string separately)
Folder 25: Interval Studies for Solo Violin
Folder 26: Music for Solo Cello
Folder 27: Music for Solo Viola
Folder 28: Petite Suite Solo Viola
Box 3
Folder 1: A Set of Opposites Cello and Piano
Folder 2: Sonata for Violin and Piano
Folder 3: Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 2
Folder 4: Sonata for Solo Violin
Folder 5: A Song of Ascents solo Viola
Folder 6: Studies for Solo Violin
Folder 7: Three Etudes for Solo Violin
Folder 8: Three Pieces for Harp
Folder 9: Three Pieces for Solo Guitar
Folder 10: Three Studies for Solo Violin
Sub-Series 4: Winds
Box 3
Folder 11: …And the Breath Stirred… solo Alto Flute
Folder 12: Collage: Five Diverse Pieces
Folder 13: Concert Duo Alto Saxophone and Piano
Box 4
Folder 1: Dance Images Solo Flute
Folder 2: Diversions Solo Clarinet
Folder 3: Duo Concertante for Flute and Piano
Folder 4: Five Lines for Solo French Horn
Folder 5: Five Sketches Alto Saxophone
Folder 6: Five Sketches Alto Saxophone
Folder 7: Four Comments Solo Bass Trombone
Folder 8: Four Miniatures and a Refrain Bass Trombone
Folder 9: Four Sketches for Solo Piccolo
Folder 10: Line Drawings Soprano Saxophone in Bb
Folder 11: Lines Solo Contrabassoon
Folder 12: Moments in Time Oboe and Piano
Folder 13: Moods of Imagination Trumpet and Piano
Folder 14: Opposites (No. 2) Flugelhorn and Piano
Folder 15: Playtime Flute and Piano
Folder 16: Sixteen Etudes for Euphonium
Folder 17: Snapshots Solo Flute
Folder 18: Snapshots Solo Flute
Folder 19: Soliloquy English Horn
Folder 20: Three Bagatelles for Solo Bassoon
Folder 21: Three for Barton Solo Bass Tuba
Folder 22: Three for Two Clarinet and Piano
Folder 23: Three Pieces for Solo Trumpet
Folder 24: Two Articulation Studies Solo Bassoon
Folder 25: Two Pieces Alto Saxophone and Piano
Sub-Series 3: Chamber Works
Sub-Series 1: Vocal
Box 4
Folder 25: Aria Da Capo one-act chamber opera
Box 5
Folder 1: Aria Da Capo
Folder 2: Aria Da Capo
Folder 3: Around the Clock (Coalitions III: 1983) soprano, flute/piccolo, clarinet/bass clarinet, piano
Folder 4: Being: Three Vignettes Soprano and Clarinet in A
Folder 5: Coalitions 2 clarinets, trombone, piano, 2 percussionists and soprano
Folder 6: Don’t Let That Horse Eat That Violin Voice, Bassoon, and Violin
Folder 7: Esther’s Monologue Soprano, oboe, viola, and cello
Folder 8: Excitement at the Circus Children’s opera
Box 6
Folder 1: Four Dream Poems Soprano, clarinet, trumpet, piano
Folder 2: Four Poems by Emily Dickinson Soprano, flute, clarinet in A
Folder 3: Introduction, Five Poems, Interludes, and Conclusion Voice, Contrabass and Piano
Folder 4: The Jumblies Narrator/Singer, clarinet, cello and piano
Folder 5: A Miscellany for Claudia Pianist/Singer/Actress, tapes and slides
Folder 6: Musician Soprano and Harp
Folder 7: The Noise A Chamber Opera in One Act
Folder 8: The Noise A Chamber Opera in One Act
Folder 9: The Pennycandystore Beyond the El Voice and bassoon
Folder 10: Poem Voice, Clarinet in A, Harp and cello
Folder 11: Poems from the Holocaust Mezzo or Alto, contrabass and piano
Folder 12: Songs of Innocence 2 high voices, flute, clarinet, piano, violin, viola, cello
Folder 13: Songs and Instrumental Commentary on Poems by Gregory Orr Voice, Piano and Clarinet in A
Folder 14: Three Poems by Emily Dickinson Medium Voice, Flute and cello
Folder 15: Three Poems Soprano and violin
Box 7
Folder 1: Three Songs of Shattering Soprano, flute and harp
Folder 2: Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird Soprano, Flute/Piccolo, Clarinet in A/Bass Clarinet, Violin/Viola, Cello and Piano
Folder 3: Two Holy Sonnets by John Donne Alto, English Horn/Oboe, Viola and Harp
Folder 4: Two Parables by Franz Kafka Voice, Violin and Viola
Folder 5: The Walter in the House Soprano or Mezzo, Clarinet in A and Piano
Folder 6: Zulus Live In Land Without A Square Soprano, Percussion, Piano, and Dancer
Sub-Series 2: Keyboard
Box 7
Folder 7: escapades: songs for rote and piano duets
Folder 8: Interplay: for two Pianos
Sub-Series 3: Strings
Box 7
Folder 9: Duo for Violin and Viola
Folder 10: Fantasy on Cantillation Motives String Trio
Folder 11: Music for Multiple Violins in Six Movements 6 Violins
Folder 12: Remembrance for String Quartet
Folder 13: String Quartet, 1958
Folder 14: String Quartet, 1981
Folder 15: String Quartet, 1989
Box 8
Folder 1: String Quartet, 1998
Folder 2: String Quartet, 1998 No. 2
Folder 3: Three for String Trio Violin, Viola, and Cello
Sub-Series 4: Winds
Box 8
Folder 4: Bicinium Oboe and Bassoon
Folder 5: Bicinium II Clarinet in A and Bassoon
Folder 6: Bicinium III Clarinet in A and Bass Clarinet
Folder 7: Bicinium IV: Games in Space Flute and Bb Clarinet
Folder 8: Brass Quartet
Folder 9: Brass Quintet
Folder 10: Brass Quintet
Folder 11: Duos for Two Bassoons
Folder 12: Diptych with Refrain 8 Horns
Folder 13: Fanfare for Brass Quintet
Folder 14: Fantasy for Brass Trio
Folder 15: Fantasy Variations on the Turkish Lady Bass Clarinet and Narrator
Folder 16: Five for Three Oboe, Clarinet and Bassoon
Folder 17: Four Bagatelles Flute, Clarinet in Bb and Bassoon
Box 9
Folder 1: Four Bagatelles Flute, Clarinet in Bb and Bassoon
Folder 2: Four Bagatelles Oboe and Clarinet in A
Folder 3: Four Bagatelles Oboe and Clarinet
Folder 4: Four Miniatures 2 Bb Clarinets
Folder 5: Four Pieces 2 Trumpets and 3 Trombones
Folder 6: Introductions, Four Miniature and Conclusion 2 C Trumpets
Folder 7: Introduction and Three Episodes Flute, Clarinet in A and Bassoon
Folder 8: A Little Suite Three Trombones
Folder 9: A Melodic Tour for Two Clarinets
Folder 10: Mindscapes Flute Choir
Folder 11: A Miscellany for a Consort of Flutes Flute Choir
Folder 12: A Miscellany for Two Flutes
Folder 13: A Miscellany for Two Alto Saxophones
Folder 14: A Miscellany for Saxophone Quartet
Folder 15: A Miscellany for Saxophone Quartet
Folder 16: Music for Six Trumpets
Folder 17: Music for Woodwind Quintet
Box 10
Folder 1: Overture, Four Sketches and Fugue Woodwind Quintet
Folder 2: Paganini Caprice 24 Double Woodwind Quintet
Folder 3: Polymorphics Double Woodwind Quintet
Folder 4: Savage’s Fanfare and Dirge Trombone Quartet
Folder 5: Scenes for the Ear Alto, Tenor, and Baritone Saxophones
Folder 6: Sicilienne Clarinet Choir (arranged by Allan Blank)
Folder 7: Three Canonic Miniatures 2 clarinets
Folder 8: Three Duos for Two Flutes
Folder 9: The Three Graces Three Flutes
Folder 10: Three Miniatures 2 Clarinets and Bassoon
Folder 11: Three One-Noters 2 A Clarinets
Folder 12: Three Paganini Caprices Brass Choir
Folder 13: Three Pieces for Clarinet Trio
Folder 14: Three Windgrams Flute, Clarinet in A and Bassoon
Folder 15: Trumpet and Percussion Ceremonies
Folder 16: Two Simple Canons 2 Flutes
Folder 17: Two Sketches for Two Euphoniums
Box 11
Folder 1: Two Studies for Brass Quintet
Folder 2: Two Studies for Two Bb Clarinets
Folder 3: Woodwind Quintet
Sub-Series 5: Percussion
Box 11
Folder 4: Duos for Two Marimbas and Assorted Percussion
Folder 5: Knock on Wood 4 Players on 12 Wooden Instruments
Sub-Series 6: Mixed Ensemble
Box 11
Folder 6: An American Medly Brass Quintet, Flute(s), and Percussion
Folder 7: Becoming Clarinet, Cello and Piano
Folder 8: Composition for Eleven Players Flute, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, French Horn, Trumpet, Trombone, Piano, Harp, Violin, Cello, Double Bass
Folder 9: Concertino for Five Players Flute/Piccolo, Clarinet in A/Bass Clarinet, Piano, Violin/Viola and Cello
Folder 10: Divertimento Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon and Piano
Folder 11: In Memorium 9/11 Violas, Cellos, Basses and Percussion
Folder 12: Interplay Flute (Piccolo), Clarinet in A, French Horn, Piano
Folder 13: Links Violin, Clarinet and Piano
Folder 14: Music for Brass and Percussion
Folder 15: Music for Three Players (suitable for 3 flutes; 2 flutes, oboe; flute, oboe, clarinet; flute, 2 clarinets; or clarinet, 2 oboes)
Folder 16: Nocturne Bassoon and Harp
Folder 17: Notes in Autumn Flute and String Quartet
Folder 18: O Hark, O Hear! Trumpet and Strings
Folder 19: Paganini Caprice #24 for Wind Choir 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns
Folder 20: Passing Through Flute and Strings
Box 12
Folder 1: Piano Quartet Piano, Violin, Viola, Cello
Folder 2: Quintet for Clarinet and String Quartet
Folder 3: Recitative, Imaginary Dance, and Postlude Flute and Harp
Folder 4: Summer Nights Bassoon, Horn, Strings
Folder 5: Three Bouquets Bassoon and Contrabass
Folder 6: Trio Flute, Violin and Harpsichord
Folder 7: Trio Flute, Bassoon, Piano
Folder 8: Unfoldings Clarinet, Viola and Cello
Folder 9: Variations Clarinet and Viola
Sub-Series 4: Concertos
Box 12
Folder 10: Concertino for Bassoon and Orchestra
Folder 11: Concertino for Oboe and String Orchestra
Folder 12: Concerto for Bassoon and Small Orchestra
Folder 13: Concerto for Contrabass and String Orchestra
Folder 14: Concerto for Contrabass and String Orchestra
Box 13
Folder 1: Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
Folder 2: Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Orchestra
Folder 3: Concerto for Violin and Orchestra
Folder 4: Divertimento Solo Tuba and Symphonic Band
Folder 5: Statements and Interactions Horn and Orchestra
Sub-Series 5: Large Ensemble
Box 14
Folder 1: Concert Piece for Band
Folder 2: Kreutzer March Symphonic Band
Folder 3: The Magic Bonbons one-act opera
Folder 4: Meditation
Folder 5: Music for Orchestra
Box 15
Folder 1: Music for Small Orchestra
Folder 2: Peace Cantata Chorus and Orchestra
Folder 3: Six Significant Landscapes Sopranos and Chamber Groups
Folder 4: Six Miniatures and a Fantasia Orchestra
Folder 5: Some Thank-You Notes Jazz Band
Folder 6: Symphony Large Orchestra
Folder 7: Three Tableaux Small Orchestra
Folder 8: While the World Spins Small Orchestra
Folder 9: Episodes for Orchestra (written by a friend from high school)

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Original Compositions],
[Series 2: Sketches and Sketchbooks],
[Series 3: Correspondence],
[Series 4: Programs],
[Series 5: Publicity],
[Series 6: Personal and Professional Reference Materials],
[Series 7: Videos and Recordings],

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