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Music at the Cheng Library
The Cheng Library has a wide range of books and media on music, as well as sheet music resources that include facsimiles of original works, orchestral mini-scores, piano-vocal arrangements, and more!
- Select the Books & Media tab on our homepage.
- Search for one or more terms that describe what you're looking for (Schubert and songs, French Art Songs, Alma del core, Duke Ellington, etc.)
- To limit your search, use the Refine Your Results section on the left to focus on scores, recordings, video, or books.
Getting too many results, or not seeing what you're after? Add another term to focus your search.
Once you've narrowed your results, take a closer look at the results to find the right one. By clicking on the title of the work, you can often learn about the arrangement
- Multiple Languages
Search on the original language of a song or opera to begin with. While our catalog might also contain translations (The Barber of Seville vs. Il Barbiere di Siviglia), a second search may be necessary to find all versions.
You may not think much of it, but sometimes the same work by different publishers can make a big difference!
Be careful to choose the correct voice part that you need. Some music is very specific (soprano, mezzo-soprano, etc.), while others are less helpful (high, medium, low). Not to mention those that are only available in the original key and may not be labeled at all. Sometimes, you just need to get the score to know for sure!
While most of our vocal music is arranged for piano/vocal performance, some items may be full orchestral scores or arranged for small ensembles or various instruments.
Unless you're looking for an aria or solo in a larger work (opera, oratorio, song cycle, etc.), you may find the songs you're looking for in collections. These may be organized by composer, voicing, country of origin, or some other criteria. Check the Table of Contents section of the catalog record to see what songs are available.
Make sure the score is available before making a trip upstairs to look for it. Sometimes items are already checked out or have gone missing. If so, check with a librarian to see if we can help to find another copy.
Encyclopedias and handbooks are great resources for finding quick content about a topic or individual. Some of these books are available electronically and can be a good way to explore new topics or ideas.
Credo Reference's Academic Core The Credo Reference database is a portal to over 1,030 full-text reference titles from over 120 major publishers. Easy to search and browse, the Credo platform provides access to text, images, maps, statistics, and graphic concept maps to illustrate connections among and between topics. The titles, which range across subjects in art, biography, business, geography, history language, law, literature, medicine, music, philosophy, psychology, religion, science, the social sciences, and technology, are fully integrated through the Credo search platform, and the Credo database also provides numerous points for accessing other Cheng Library resources. Credo is a most useful starting point for general research on almost any topic.
Oxford Music Online Oxford Music Online is a full-text portal to high-quality music reference sources, including the Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, containing over 50,000 articles on composers, performers, conductors, instruments and notation, forms and genres, and individual works. The database also includes the full text of The Oxford Companion to Music and The Oxford Dictionary of Music.
Where is the Music???
Have you gone upstairs looking for music books or scores, only to find that our collection jumps from L to P?
Because of the specialized nature of our Art (N) and Music (M) collections, these resources have been separated from the rest of our books, and are available along the front of the building, on the second floor.
The Library of Congress system classifies music using the M call number range.
- M Music (Scores/Sheet Music)
- ML Literature on Music
- MT Instruction & Study (Theory/Technique)
|| Secular vocal music
|| Sacred vocal music
Most operas, art songs, and song collections will be located in the range of M1500-1625, although some may be in other locations.
Search Books & Media
Search the Cheng Library online catalog for books and media. If you need journal articles, go to our Databases page.
eBooks & Streaming Video
While searching the catalog, you'll find a number of books and videos with a location of Internet Resource, and a link in place of the call number.
Simply follow the link ('Click here for full text', 'View Streaming Video', etc.) to access the online version of these books and videos.
You will need to log in to view these items from off campus (and on campus, for videos). If you are having trouble, contact the reference desk for assistance (973-720-2116; email@example.com).