Italian composer, musician and conductor Francesco Lotoro has spent the last 20 years searching for and acquiring manuscripts of music written in the concentration camps and internment camps of World War II.
Last week, Lotoro performed in a concert of music from his unique library, co-sponsored by Emory’s Center for Ethics, and staged at Emory’s Schwartz Center for Performing Arts.
Following the concert, Emory announced that Lotoro’s collection – of more than 4,000 manuscripts and 13,000 pieces of microfiche, plus letters, drawings and photographs -- eventually will be donated to Emory’s Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library.
Rick Luce, vice provost and director of Emory libraries, said Emory’s conservators will preserve the fragile collection, some of which is extremely perishable.
Concentration camp inmates notated these musical pieces on any materials they could scavenge, including toilet paper.
“The question of preservation is a pressing problem,” Luce said. He welcomed the donation as a vital addition to the school’s collection of materials that deal with the Holocaust and Jewish studies. “We are excited about this extraordinary and unique collection.”
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