International Association of Jewish Music Collections

International Association of Jewish Music Collections


The purpose of the International Association of Jewish Music Collections (IAJMC) is to share information between archives, scholars and performers;  to facilitate communication between owners of collections of Jewish music and libraries and archives; and to aid stakeholders in better discovery, preservation and cataloging of items of interest to Jewish musicology and performance.


The initial organization of the nascent IAJMC occurred in 2015. During the ICSM seminar at the Royal College of Music, Exile Estates, Archives and Music Restitution (May 2015) and the International Conference on Jewish Liturgical Music, held in Leeds, UK under the auspices of the 3-year international project ‘Performing the Jewish Archive’ (June 2015),  the crucial role of archives was identified as a means for safeguarding musical estates still in private hands. A proposal was suggested for cataloguing and making accessible the contents of such collections for the benefit of scholars, performers and the general public.

Libraries and Archives form the base of a triangle that supports and connect the work of scholars and performers. Another part of that triangle are the current owners of family papers and artifacts. To help facilitate this triangular bond, it was resolved to establish an International Association of Jewish Music Collections that include any institution with significant music collections of Jewish relevance. This will include music that was impacted by the edicts of the Third Reich and the current estates of musical exiles from Central Europe.

Aims of the Association:

  1. Locate and identify collections of Jewish music
  2. Contact, offer support and advice for owners of estates not yet in archives
  3. Communicate between private estates and institutional archives
  4. Facilitate communication between the different archives
  5. Share information between archives, scholars and performers
  6. Create a knowledge base of extent collections and relevant catalogues
  7. Help facilitate training of cataloguers and archivists in special needs of Jewish music
  8. Sponsor joint funding bids


To achieve these aims,  IAJMC current goals are:

  1. Create a standard of relevant information needed from each potential collection
  2. Contact potential members to join and encourage them to supply information
  3. Establish an email newsletter to the members to inform of activity and aspirations
  4. Establish a website for the association
  5. Provide or fund training and internships for cataloguers and archivists at applicable institutions
  6. Raise funds to achieve long-term goals – ie scholarships to support interns


Contact Information:

To learn more about the IAJMC, or to make inquires to join, please contact:

Geraldine Auerbach: 

Founding Committee members:

  1. Dr Gila Flam Director, The Sound Archive of the Israel National Library Jerusalem, Israel
  2. Bret Werb, Music Collections Curator, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D. C., USA
  3. Dr Stephen Muir, Senior lecturer in Music University of Leeds and Director of the project: Performing the Jewish Archive, Leeds, UK
  4. Geraldine Auerbach MBE, International Centre for Suppressed Music, London, UK
  5. Dr Annette Boeckler Leo Baeck College Library, London, UK
  6. Judith S. Pinnolis,  School of Jewish Music, Hebrew College, Newton, MA, USA