Boorman, Stanley 1939–

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Boorman, Stanley 1939–

(Stanley Harold Boorman)


Born August 28, 1939, in Croydon, Surrey, England; married Veronica Griffiths (marriage ended); married Ann Cuzzi (a pianist), July 24, 1983; children: Peter. Education: King's College, London, B.Mus. and A.K.C., both 1967, M.Mus., 1968, Ph.D., 1976.


Home—Carmel, NY. Office—Department of Music, New York University, 24 Waverly Pl., Ste. 268, New York, NY 10003. E-mail—[email protected].


Musicologist, composer, writer, editor, and educator. Music teacher in Essex, England, 1962-64; professor of musicianship at Guildhall School of Music, 1967-69; University of Nottingham, Nottingham, England, musicologist and assistant lecturer to lecturer in music, 1969-72; Cambridge University, Cambridge, England, fellow of Sidney Sussex College, began as assistant lecturer, became lecturer, 1973-77; University of Wisconsin—Madison, associate professor of music, 1978-79; New York University, New York, NY, associate professor to professor of music, 1979—, director of Center for Early Music, 1984—. Military service: British Army, 1960-62.


Royal College of Music (associate), Society for Textual Scholarship (board of directors, 1995-97, 2006), Royal Musical Association, Bibliographical Society, American Musicological Society (member of council, 1988-90), Society for Textual Studies (board of directors, 1995).


Villa i Tatti fellowship (Florence, Italy), 1983-84; National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship, 1987, Guggenheim Foundation fellowship, 2002-03.


(Editor) Studies in the Performance of Late Medieval Music, Cambridge University Press (New York, NY), 1984.

(Editor, with Ellen S. Beebe, and author of introduction) Harmonice Musices Odhecaton A, Broude Trust (New York, NY), 2001.

Studies in the Printing, Publishing, and Performance of Music in the 16th Century, Ashgate (Burlington, VT), 2005.

Ottaviano Petrucci: Catalogue Raisonné, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 2006.

Contributor to Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians. Contributor to musicology journals. Member of editorial board of New Grove Dictionary of Music, 1974-76.


Stanley Boorman is a musicologist whose research interests include early music and its performance, avant-garde music, and musical notation. He is also a composer and writer who has contributed to numerous professional journals and authored or edited several books. In his 2005 book, Studies in the Printing, Publishing, and Performance of Music in the 16th Century, the author presents a series of essays dating from 1977 to 1995 focusing on how various components of printing, publishing, and performance affect modern views of sixteenth-century music. The eleven essays stem from journal articles or conference presentations and are academic in that they focus on such aspects of sixteenth-century music as compositional practice and notation, as well as the music's history and its performance.

The essays in Studies in the Printing, Publishing, and Performance of Music in the 16th Century are divided into three sections as indicated in the title. The essays on printing look at printing-house procedures indicated by various aspects of the printed material, such as analyses of changes in paper and staff patterns. His essays on publishing examine aspects of sixteenth-century music publishing such as the targeting of a specialized market, conflicting attributions, and anonymous publications. Boorman's look at performance examines manuscripts as they reveal compositional style and performance practice with essays such as "Two Aspects of Performance Practice in the Sistine Chapel of the Early Sixteenth Century." Boorman also includes indexes of editions and manuscripts that he has cited in the essays. "This collection of essays … demonstrates the astounding variety and the remarkable depth of Stanley Boorman's research," wrote Richard J. Agee in Notes. Agee went on: "The reader of this collection will be deeply rewarded for taking the care to read each of these essays and observe a keen intellect at work."

Boorman's next book, Ottaviano Petrucci: Catalogue Raisonné, presents a detailed bibliographical study of sixteenth-century Italian printer Ottaviano Petrucci's surviving books. Petrucci is credited with printing the first book of sheet music from movable type. Among his publications are works by some of the Renaissance era's most notable composers, including Antoine Brumel. In addition to the bibliographical study, the author examines Petrucci's printing techniques, analyzes the printed music, and explores possible sources for the musical repertoire published. Boorman also discusses the musical taste represented by the printed music.

Noting that "by any objective standard this book ranks as a magnificent achievement," Richard J. Agee in Renaissance Quarterly stated: "Boorman weaves together bibliographical, archival-notarial evidence, and political and epidemiological events that affected Petrucci's career from his initial presence in Venice … through the approval of his privilege by the Venetian Signoria for an undisclosed printing invention in 1498." Commenting on the author's cataloguing of Petrucci's books, Journal of the American Musicological Society contributor David Fallows noted: "Boorman describes every known copy in magnificent detail. He identifies and classifies every watermark. Every handwritten correction is reported and categorized. Every traceable provenance is explored. Each description ends with a commentary, sometimes running to two full pages of closely packed analysis. Anybody who ever thought that an early music print is just a repository for music will come away from these commentaries with a new view of that world."



Journal of the American Musicological Society, summer, 2007, David Fallows, review of Ottaviano Petrucci: Catalogue Raisonné, p. 415.

Notes, March, 2007, Richard J. Agee, review of Studies in the Printing, Publishing, and Performance of Music in the 16th Century, p. 593.

Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, June, 2006, D.W. Krummel, review of Studies in the Printing, Publishing, and Performance of Music in the 16th Century, p. 297; June, 2007, Paul F. Ghel, review of Ottaviano Petrucci, p. 227.

Reference & Research Book News, February, 2006, review of Studies in the Printing, Publishing, and Performance of Music in the 16th Century.

Renaissance Quarterly, winter, 2006, Richard J. Agee, review of Ottaviano Petrucci.


New York University, (January 22, 2008), faculty profile of author.