Guildhall School of Music and Drama Library

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Guildhall School of Music and Drama Library

Guildhall School of Music and Drama Library


The Library has one of the most extensive specialised collections of music and drama print and electronic resources in Europe, and is integral to the Guildhall School’s status as a centre of excellence in music and drama teaching, learning and research.

It aims to provide students with a comfortable, supportive and welcoming study environment. Its staff all have a specialist knowledge of, and an interest in, music or drama and will always do their best to help you. Student levels of satisfaction with the collections and enquiry services are always very high.

> Access the School Library Catalogue online

The services that the Library offers include

Lending facilities

Lending facilities for books on music, theatre, drama criticism, stagecraft, costume, and music therapy. There is also a comprehensive collection of plays, poetry, scores, sets of chamber music parts and DVD recordings. Items not immediately available can be reserved and the Library responds to requests for new material either by purchase or loan from external sources. Teaching and performance material is provided for curricular use. A complete set of Orchestral Excerpts on CD-ROM gives access to a huge collection of instrumental excerpts for exam and audition use.

Reference and study facilities

Reference and study facilities are in the Westrup Library which occupies the upper floor of the Library. In addition to the main study area which houses the Westrup and Reference collections of books and scores, there is a Drama Library, an Audio-Visual Aisle and a Computer Area, each with additional study facilities. The Audio-Visual Aisle has study carrels with listening facilities for CD and black disc, and video and DVD players for viewing operas and plays. The audio collections include over 9,000 recordings (mostly on CD) for reference use only, and over 2,900 DVDs and videos which can be borrowed for a week at a time.


Journals – the library subscribes to over 90 current titles in electronic and print form. A huge range of digitised journal articles in the arts and humanities is available via our JSTOR subscriptions.


The Computer Area houses a range of multimedia workstations. The facilities available at these workstations include internet access, email, word-processing, bibliographic citation software and the ability to compose, arrange and print music scores and parts using Finale and Sibelius notation software. Networked printing from the PCs, and WiFi connectivity, are provided by the IT Department.


E-resources including Grove Online, Drama Online, RILM, RISM, RIPM, Music Index, IPA Source, BabelScores, Credo Reference and JSTOR are also available for searching. Results can be printed out. Access to these resources from home or elsewhere outside the School can be requested using the ATHENS login supplied by the Library.


Streaming services include Naxos Audio and Video collections, full access to the National Sound Archive Collection, Music Online – Listening and Digital Theatre Plus.


All new students are offered an introductory tutorial on the use of the Library, including instruction in the use of the online computer catalogue. This tutorial is supplemented by a series of leaflets on specific aspects of library use and further user education seminars and 1-1 appointments.


The Library also produces bibliographies of library resources in various subject areas, and has further helpful resources, including lists of most recent items added to stock, and Internet links on the School’s intranet.

The Library Catalogue is now available via this website and on the student mobile phone app, allowing users to check stock holdings when the Library is not open.

For further information, please contact: