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Ariadna Mikéshina music manuscripts and papers

Identifier: Mikeshina

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents

The collection includes music in manuscript and published editions for solo piano, voice and piano, various solo instruments with piano accompaniment, a few chamber works, scores for ballets and plays and orchestral music.

Included in her papers are extensive notes and musical examples used in her lectures on Russian music and dance. Additional programs, notes, and some correspondence are also included.


  • 1917 - 1982


Language of Materials

Primarily English and Russian, with some titles, texts and material in Italian, German, French and Spanish.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is stored off-site and requires two business days advance notice for retrieval. Please contact the McCormick Library at or 847-491-3635 for more information or to schedule an appointment to view the collection.


23 Boxes


The Ariadna Mikéshina Music Manuscripts and Papers comprise a collection of the Russian-born emigre composer’s music in manuscript and published editions as well as some programs, notes and correspondence documenting her career. Mikéshina composed songs, works for solo piano, solo instruments with piano accompaniment as well as works for chamber ensembles, orchestra and music for ballet and plays.


Materials are arranged in three series: –Series I. Manuscript music scores –Series II. Published music scores –Series III: Notes, papers and other non-musical materials.

Series I: Music is subdivided into 5 sub-series: 1. Vocal music 2. Instrumental music 3. Theatre music 4. Orchestral music 5. Sketches, drafts and fragments

Within the music series and subseries there are further levels of arrangement for the various genres or instrumentations represented. Works are arranged within each subseries and/or instrumentation/genre group by opus number as this appears to have been Mikéshina’s original order which was disrupted sometime prior or during the collection’s transfer to Northwestern.

While retaining and restoring the composer’s original order– arrangement by instrumentation or genre, and then by opus number is important, any arrangement by opus number is problematic in this collection. Mikéshina assigned her own opus numbers as she composed, rather than the more common practice of a publisher or cataloger assigning opus numbers retrospectively. Mikéshina’s opus numbers are inconsistent and can be confusing to users of this collection. She frequently repeated, revised and reused music materials and changed opus numbers when revising or reusing material. She frequnetly appears to have extracted songs or movements and inserted them in a new work, set of pieces, or re-scored existing composition for another instrument or ensemble. In these cases the opus number of the original works were sometimes, but not always retained rather than the more standard practice of assigning new opus numbers to represent the new works which were created by such revisions or reuse.

Notes indicating items with evidence of multiple opus number assignments, indicate the alternative or former opus numbers have been provided. Letters in brackets have been appended in several cases to distinguish distinct works which share an opus number but otherwise appear to be unique material and unrelatted so as not to further confuse users of this collection.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by the composer's son.

Separated Materials

Duplicate copies of published materials from this collection have been discarded.

Processing Information

Processed by Alan Akers, 2019. Finding aid by Alan Akers, April 2019.

Guide to the Ariadna Mikeshina music manuscripts and papers
Alan Akers
July 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Library Details

Part of the Music Library Repository

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US