Of the many resources available online, we need to be very selective in what we include and we try to focus on subjects of most interest to teaching and research at the Faculty.
So why booseyonline? Because it helps to fill a gap in the collections in an area that has been flagged up as being of major interest: contemporary music.
One of the reasons there is a gap of course is that so much 20/21th century music is only available for hire, or if you are very lucky (and rich) as potentially quite pricy custom prints.
And this is why booseyonline is such an interesting resource: it includes scores that are part of their rental catalogue as well as scores from the sales catalogue. For students and researchers (and librarians) this is excellent news.
Several John Adams scores as well as Turnage’s Anna Nicole (which the UL was asked to buy even before the opera production had started) are part of the online offer of otherwise rental only scores. So I’m very pleased indeed.
The scores are reproduced in very good quality on the screen. One can leaf through, go straight to a certain page using thumbnails, zoom in on particular sections…
Zooming in? But then I can’t see the full page on my screen anymore! Unfortunately, this is the big disadvantage we undoubtedly were all expecting. For orchestral works, you need either exceptionally good eyesight or a very big screen indeed (a data projector and a blank wall perhaps?). And since this is for study and research purposes only we are obviously only allowed to look and not print.
However, since we now can look free of charge at scores of some major 20/21th century works without any copyright impediments, I’m not complaining. I think that’s absolutely brilliant.