Dorothy Livesay:

An Inventory of Her Sound Recordings at the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections

Inventory prepared by the staff of the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections
University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections
Winnipeg, Manitoba
(1986)

Finding aid encoded by Julianna Trivers (April 2002)
Finding aid written in English.

Revision History

  • July 26, 2005 - TC 31 converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).


Collection Summary

Repository:
University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections
Winnipeg, Manitoba

Creator:
Dorothy Livesay

Title:
Dorothy Livesay Tape Collection

Dates:
[196-?]-1983

Quantity:
19 tape reels and other material. Note: Also contains 24 audio cassettes, 1 dictophone tape, and 1 audio disc.

Identification:
TC 31

Language
English.

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Biography of Dorothy Livesay

Dorothy Livesay was born in Winnipeg in October 1909. In 1920, she moved with her family to Toronto, where she went to school and later to the University of Toronto. Her first collection of poetry, Green Pitcher , was published in 1929 when she was only nineteen. It is a remarkable book the first fully modernist collection of poetry published in Canada, yet it was only the first of a series of remarkable accomplishments by one of the most accomplished and committed writers in our history. Dorothy Livesay has remained at the leading edge of intellectual discovery and literary innovation in Canada.

During the 1930's, after a brief stay in France, Livesay became a social worker and a member of the Young Communist Party. Her experience of working with the poor and her discovery of such left wing writers as C. Day Lewis, Stephen Spender, W.H. Auden and Lewis MacNeice led her to abandon the imagist poetry of her early work and to write such committed social poetry as "Day and Night," and "The Outrider." She also wrote agit-prop drama, contributed to and edited work for New Frontier and Masses magazines and took an active part in the work of the Progressive Arts Club. She married Duncan Macnair, moved to Vancouver and continued to write out of her social conscience.

During the 1940's and 50's Livesay devoted much of her time to raising her children, and her poetry lost some of its fervour, becoming more private and domestic. Nevertheless, she published the startlingly innovative poem for voices "Call My People Home," a long documentary poem about the removal of the Japanese from the West Coast.

After the death of her husband, Livesay spent some time in Zambia, then returned to Canada in the early 1960's to take part in a small Canadian literary renaissance. Her books The Unquiet Bed and Plainsongs looked at human relationships, love, and the problems of aging. In the late 1960's and 70's, Livesay's poetry became important to the women's movement, and Livesay herself became an important part of that movement. At the same time, she started the influential poetry journal CVII and returned to the social commitment of the 1930's, this time focussing on the peace and anti-nuclear movements in such works as The Raw Edges .

The Livesay papers are among the most important records in Canadian literature. They document a remarkable career, but they also tell the story of Canadian literature itself. Dorothy Livesay was always at the centre of Canadian literary life, and her papers are the record of a fine and sensitive artist in touch with her own art and her times.

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Scope and Contents of the Papers

The collection consists sound recordings mainly of interviews, poetry readings, memoirs, music, and recordings of CBC and BBC radio programs.

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Organization of the Papers

This collection is organized into 4 series.

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Restrictions on Access

Use of photographs is subject to copyright restrictions on specific items.

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Other Finding Aids

MSS 37 , TC 31

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Detailed Description of the Collection

Reel-to-Reel Tapes [ca. 1960s-1979]
Box
1 Reel # 1 Dorothy Livesay, [196-?]

7 inches

Side 1 : About her N.Rhodesia assignment; Poetry reading

IPS: 7 1/2 ends 3 3/4

Side 2 : Interviews teachers in N. Rhodesia about system of education

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 2 Fred Douglas (or Hogg?), 1964

5 inches

Poetry reading, Vancouver

IPS: 7 1/2

Reel # 3, 1964-1965

7 inches

Side 1 : Conversations with Jean and Alan Crawley, Michael Crawley,and Dorothy Livesay. Followed by Dorothy Livesay reading from Call My People Home, 1964

Alan Crawley and Dorothy Livesay: About recent Canadian literature, 1965

IPS: 7 1/2

Side 2 : Blank

Reel # 4, 1966-1986

7 inches

Side 1 : Excerpt of conversation between Dorothy Livesay and Alan Crawley, 1966

Alan Crawley on poetry in music and conversation with Dorothy Livesay, 1967

CBC, "Anthology" - Alan Crawley, editor of the magazine, Contemporary Verse, Nov. 30, 1968

Side 2 : Blank

IPS: 7 1/2

Reel # 5: W. B. Yeats 1965

4 inches

Side 1 : (Taken from CBC tape), July 1965

Side 2 : Blank

IPS 3 3/4

Reel # 6 n.d.;1967

7 inches

Side 1 : Bob McNutt - Interview with Dorothy Livesay, Dec. 18, 1967

Side 2 : New Brunswick Teachers College, UNB, Poetry reading with John Gill, John Newlove, George Bowering, Alden Nowlan

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 7 Music by Tosca, 1967?

4 inches

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 8 E. J. Pratt, [ca. 1968]

5 inches

Side 1 : Reading from "The Roosevelt and the Antinoe," University of New Brunswick

Side 2 : Blank

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 9 [1968?]

Side 1 : Blank

Side 2 : Donald Cameron - Interview with Dorothy Livesay

IPS: 7 1/2

Reel # 10 1970

3 inches

Sides 1&2 :

John Cage

- John Cage as himself

- Music by John Cage

- Harry Sommers talks about his impressions of John Cage

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 11 n.d.; [1970?]

7 inches

Side 1 : CBC(?)/ Radio Program,"Anthology" - Earle Birney reading, n.d.

Side 2 : Dorothy Livesay, in Edmonton - Personal musings about her father John Frederick Bligh Livesay and her childhood relationships with him (The last half of this side is unintelligible.), [1970?]

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 12 1978

7 inches

Sides 1 & 2 : Recital of songs and piano music by Violet Archer at Knox Metropolitan United Church, Edmonton, Alberta, Feb.28 1978

- June Hunt, mezzo-contralto

- Albert Krywolt, pianist

- Some texts by Dorothy Livesay: "My Hands" 1972; "Plainsongs" 1977

IPS: 7 1/2

Reel # 13 Dorothy Livesay Reading n.d.

5 inches

Side 1 : Readings of "The Wind Our Enemy" by Anne Marriott and; Call My People Home (Selections)

Side 2 : Continuation of reading - Call My People Home

IPS: 7 1/2

Reel # 14 n. d.

5 inches

Side 1 : Music by musicians from Rhodesia

Side 2 : Music, poetry, and discussion on English grammar

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 15 n.d.

7 inches

Side 1 : "Sunday Supplement" - Bob Russel

- Discussion on "games"

(Last part is blank)

Side 2 : Henri Chopin - Experimenting with resources of the voice (i.e., through the use of multiple recordings)

(Last part is blank)

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 16 Music n.d.

Side 1 : Mozart Quintet

Brandenburg Concerto

Renaissance Conzos

Side 2 : Rhapsody by Bela Bartok

Two Quartets by Haydn

Two Mazurkas by Chopin

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 17 Opera n.d.

5 inches

Sides 1 & 2 : Opera

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 18 n.d.

4 inches

Side 1 : Possibly traditional folk songs

Side 2 : Possibly traditional folk songs

Nursery Rhymes

IPS: 3 3/4

Reel # 19 n.d.

3 inches

Sides 1 & 2: Bob(?) Hogg, student

- Poetry reading

IPS 3 3/4

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Cassette Tapes [1968?]-1982
Box
2 Tape # 20 1968?

Side 1 : Donald Cameron - Visit with Dorothy Livesay Jan. 19, 1968?

Concludes with instrumental music

Side 2 : Instrumental music

Last part is blank

Tape # 21 1971

Side 1 : "Canadian Poets on Tape," produced by the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

- Dorothy Livesay poetry reading

Side 2 : Gwendolyn MacEwen poetry reading

Tape # 22 1972

Side 1 : Dorothy Livesay - Lectures on the Thirties at the University of Victoria (for Rob McDougall's class?)

Side 2 : Lecture continues

Interview. (Interviewer not identified)

Tape # 23 1973

Side 1 : Dorothy Livesay - Poetry reading for Mrs. Jenkins' class

Side 2 : Poetry reading continued

Phyllis Webb - Review of Dorothy Livesay's work for March 24 "Critics on Air," Radio broadcast, Vancouver

Tape # 24 [ca. 1973]

Side 1 : Dorothy Livesay - Conversation with Alan Crawley, May 12, [ca. 1973]

Side 2 : Recollections of her mother, Florence Randal Livesay

Tape # 25 1978

Side 1 : Dorothy Livesay - Reading for PEMC

Side 2 : Blank

Tape # 26 1979

Side 1 : Blank

Side 2 : Dorothy Livesay - Rambling remarks about creativity, teaching poetry, etc., March 1979

Tape # 27 1979

Side 1 : "Modern Canadian Poets," 2 Recorded Archives Taping Series, selected and produced as a project of the League of Canadian Poetsin St.Jacobs, Ont.

- Interview with Dorothy Livesay by Andrew Marshall

- Readings by Dorothy Livesay

Side 2 : Readings by Dorothy Livesay continued

Tapes # 28 n.d.

Side 1 : (The same as #27?)

Recorded Archives Taping Series, League of Canadian Poets in St. Jacobs, Ont.

- Interview with Dorothy Livesay

- Readings by Dorothy Livesay

Side 2 : Readings by Dorothy Livesay continued

Tape # 29 1981

Side 1 : "Womanvision" (Co-op Radio?) - Interview with Dorothy Livesay, Jan. 26 1981

Vocal music Last part is blank

Side 2 : First part is blank

Female reading

Tape # 30 1981

Side 1 : "Womanvision" (Co-op Radio?) (Begins near the end of Side 1), July 1981- Dorothy Kidd interviews Dorothy Livesay on women in the Soviet Union

Side 2 : Interview continued

Last part is blank

Tape # 31 1981

Side 1 :Poetry Series, Medicine Hat, Alta., March 5, 1981

- Lengthy introduction of Dorothy Livesay by Helen Hoy

- Poetry reading by Dorothy Livesay

Side 2 : Poetry reading continued

Tape # 32 1982

Side 1 : CBC/TV,"Spectrum' March 17, 1982

- Dorothy Livesay,"The Woman I Am"

Last part is blank

Side 2 : Blank

Tape # 33 n.d.; 1982

Side 1 : CBC,"Audience" Aug. 27,1982

- Ethel Wilson

Side 2 : Operation Dismantled

Tape # 34 1982

Side 1 : CBC,"Hornby Collection," "Voices of Women," Dorothy Livesay's suite, Dec. 4, 1982

- Betty Phyllips reading from New Poems , by Dorothy Livesay

Side 2 : BBC docu-drama on birth and pre-birth. From the program, "The Spring of Memory" Dec. 8, 1982

Tape # 35 1983

Side 1 : CBC,"Disasters'.

Radio Broadcast "2 New Hours"with host Warren Davis. Presented at Bloor Street United Church, Toronto, Ont., April 1983

- Program on Renga, traditional Japanese chain music with the collaboration of more than 100 poets and musicians

Side 2 : Dorothy Livesay (At Massey College, Toronto) Jan. 9, 1983

- Recording of memoirs

Tape # 36 1983

Side 1 : CBC Radio,"Morningside"

- Peter Gzowski in conversation with Dorothy Livesay, Writer-in-Residence at the University of Toronto, March 16, 1983

Regina Radio Studio, April 19, 1983

-Lorna Crozier reviews Dorothy Livesay's Phases of Love and Margaret Atwood's Murder in the Dark

Finale of Beethoven's7th Symphony

Last part is blank

Side 2 : Blank

Tape # 37 1980 or 1981

Side 1 : Scattered and unconnected

Mostly blank

Side 2 : Begins with brief comments on Vancouver as a choral city by John Washburne(?), Conductor of the Vancouver Chamber Orchestra, Season 1980/81

Dorothy Livesay and her sister Sophie Livesay Stewart talk about their shared Winnipeg childhood, n.d.

Tape # 38 n.d.

Side 1 : Dorothy Livesay interviews Mildred Osterhout Fahrini

Side 2 : CBC Radio,"Morningside"

- Program on George Falady, Hungarian Poet

Dorothy Livesay answers questions for Room of One's Own

Tape # 39 n.d.

Side 1 : Dorothy Livesay

- Interviews Christopher Grieve (Hugh MacDiarmid, pseudonym)

Side 2 : Blank

Tape # 40 n.d.

Sides 1 & 2 : On A. M. Klein

Tape # 41 n.d.

Side 1 : Ernest Manera--Music

- "Bartok and the Geranium"

Last part is blank

Side 2 : Blank

Tape # 42 n.d.

Sides 1 & 2 : Spanish music

Tape title: Provence par L'escolo Mistralenco(?)

Tape # 43 n.d.

Sides 1 & 2 : Conclusion of a two-day seminar on Manitoba literature (with a focus on ethnic literature). Participants include Dorothy Livesay, David Arnason, Al Reimer, Mrs. Peters, and Dr. Pauls. The discussion is chaired by Dr. Saunders.

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Dictaphone Tape 1974
Box
2 Tape # 44 1974

Sides 1 & 2 : Dorothy Livesay - Memoirs about the Thirties Dec. 1974

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Record n.d.
Box
2 Tape # 44 Bulgarian n.d.

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