About Us

HMRS Library Information–A Quick Introduction

Posted on July 2, 2021 by Michael Kuhrt

The library was originally referred to as the Nancy Young Memorial Library, honoring her memory and comprising an initial donation of her personal library. Nancy was an early , influential member of one of the chapters later consolidated to form the current Hudson Mohawk Recorder Society. Subsequent substantial donations and acquisitions have increased the size of the library to 7173 cataloged pieces of music. Method and technique volumes are also included in the collection.

A data entry for every piece in the library is housed in an Access relational database. A more widely accessible list of information is exported to an Excel spreadsheet. A copy of the spreadsheet may be obtained by request from the librarian.

All individual pieces and bound collections are housed in separate folders. Each folder is assigned a 7-digit accession number with 1 as the first digit. Pieces within collections are assigned accession numbers where the first digit is a 2. Fields within each record hold information for title, composer, and in the case of pieces contained in collections, the accession number of the collection’s folder. Other fields contain codes for the number of players, parts assignments, era and seasonal classifications. Records may be filtered with the spreadsheet to produce customized lists such as all alto-alto duets by Baroque composers, or all pieces of any description by Mozart.

For those wishing to browse the holdings, a glossary of codes used to systematize descriptions may be obtained when requesting a current spreadsheet of the holdings. Use of the HMRS library is limited to members of HMRS. Items may be borrowed for personal use for a reasonable length of time.

To make arrangements to use the HMRS library, email a request to president.hmrs@gmail.com.

HMRS History

Posted on June 19, 2020 by Lee Danielson

[Adapted from an HMRS history by Michael Murphy]

 The Hudson Mohawk Recorder Society (HMRS) is one of about 100 chapters of the American Recorder Society (ARS). Other chapters in New York state are located in Buffalo, Rochester, Westchester, New York City, and Long Island (2).  

ARS, the parent organization, was originally organized in 1939 by Suzanne Bloch, daughter of composer, Ernest Bloch. Primarily a lutenist, she was introduced to the recorder by Carl Dolmetsch and performed with him in New York City in 1935—probably the first recorder concert in America. After World War II the Society was reorganized and Erich Katz (1900-1973), a musicologist from Germany, became the driving force. His teaching was an inspiration to many American professional and amateur recorder players. Many of these pioneers and others associated with the ARS arranged and composed music for the recorder.  (ARS Information Booklet #2, revision by Constance Primus, 2008).  

Many members of HMRS are also members of ARS. ARS membership comes with a quarterly magazine and full access to the extensive ARS website (americanrecorder.org), which includes downloadable music, on-line teaching and resource links.

HRMS is one of the oldest, continuously running recorder music chapters of ARS in the Northeast United States.  Located in the Capital Region of New York, HMRS was originally composed of two separate chapters: the Northeast Chapter and the Capital District Chapter.  The Northeast Chapter was formed in 1966 and drew members not only from the greater Albany area, but from the “north country” of Saratoga Springs, Burnt Hills, and even as far north as Schroon Lake (it was occasionally referred to by outsiders as the Burnt Hills Chapter) and from neighboring Massachusetts. The Northeast Chapter also formed the first recorder music library in the area. The Capital District Chapter formed a bit later in 1976 under the guidance and leadership of Dr. Joseph Loux. 

The Northeast and Capital District chapters began joint meetings, rehearsals, consorts, and workshops in the late 1970’s. These productive joint arrangements persisted until 1991 when members voted to officially combine the chapters under the single umbrella name of Hudson Mohawk Recorder Society (HMRS). HMRS and its two foundation chapters, therefore, have a combined history of over 50 years, and almost 30 years in the form of the Hudson Mohawk Chapter of the American Recorder Society.