Scope of the Archival Collection
When the Deed of Settlement or instrument by which the Seaborn, Broughton and Walford Foundation was executed on the 9th October, 1986, Dr Rodney Seaborn AO, OBE, the Founding director and President, wisely ensured that the scope of the Foundation’s mandate included as a statement of the objects of the Foundation, the words “for the purposes generally of encouraging and promoting performing arts within Australia.”
The scope of the archival and library collections of The Foundation are defined in such broad terms as to comprehend practically all aspects of the history and development of theatre and the performing arts generally in Australia, so that there is literally no aspect of the subject scope of the Archives and Library which does not touch, to a greater or less extent, upon the history of the theatrical and performing arts in Australia.
The scope of the Foundation’s collections embrace drama, opera, dance, ballet, mime, music, puppetry and all other forms and facets of the performing arts and other arts in Australia including the plastic arts in so far as they may relate to the performing arts in all their expressions, forms and media (that is, the arts of shaping or modelling, carving and sculpture).
In addition to its responsibility for preserving historical records on Australian theatre, an important long-term object of the Foundation, in keeping with its charter, is to expand its existing collections to include both archival and bibliographic resources for historical research on painting, sculpture, craft work, community and ethnic arts and languages, radio, films, television and literature.
The Foundation Archives, Library and Performing Arts collections fulfil an important role in supporting and sustaining the Foundation’s aims of promoting education and research in the performing arts in Australia and overseas with the aim of developing the performing arts in Australia. The Foundation’s archival and library collections are available for the use of students, scholars and teachers involved in training for the performing arts throughout Australia.
The Foundation also has a responsibility, by facilitating and encouraging access to its archival and library resources, to publish and promote in any media and otherwise support the dissemination by all means and media, knowledge and information concerning the performing arts and Australian performing artists and arts organisations in particular.
- Photographic prints of an unidentified stage production of The Sentimental Bloke, possibly at J.C. Williamson’s Theatre Royal, Sydney, production opening on Wednesday 20th June, 1962
- Photographic prints of the Criterion Theatre and Criterion Hotel in August 1922.
- Seating Plan of the Criterion Theatre, Sydney [undated]
- Advertising brochure for the Actors’ Patriotic Gala Matinee at Her Majesty’s Theatre, Sydney on Thursday 3rd September, 1914
- Two copies of Souvenir Programmes for the 200th performance of Our Miss Gibbs on Wednesday 12th April, 1911 at the Theatre Royal, Sydney, including one imperfect copy of the programme and one incomplete portion of the programme.
- J.C. Williamson Ltd. Magazine Programme Scrapbook for the Criterion Theatre, including cast lists [17.12.1921 – 13.07.1935]
- J.C. Williamson Ltd. Magazine Programme Scrapbook for Her Majesty’s Theatre , including cast lists [01.08.1903 – 10.07.1933]
- J.C. Williamson Ltd. Magazine Programme Scrapbook for the Theatre Royal, Sydney, including cast lists [28.01.1928 – 03.01.1948]
- “Salary Book” [comprising “Salary Sheets” or “Salary Lists” for theatrical productions of J.C. Williamson Theatres Limited. Includes lists of all performers and production personnel. [Date Range: 04.11.1955 –31.10.1970; 31.10.1972] [1 volume]
The S,B&W Foundation is custodian of a large accumulation of monographs and serials which are of considerable historical significance for the study of the performing arts in Australia.
Our library holdings initially included:
- The Dennis Wolanski Library Books
- The Philip Parsons, Katherine Brisbane and Currency Press Library
- Nancy Robertson Johnston Library of Puppetry Books
We encourage teachers and student groups to book in and visit the S,B&W Foundation premises in Neutral Bay where many of the collections are stored. We have on offer an amazing educational resource. Please phone to organise a time for your group through the CONTACT page.