Dorothy K. Payne Music Library Endowment

Dr. Dorothy K. Payne
Dr. Dorothy K. Payne

Dorothy Katherine Payne, Distinguished Professor Emerita of Music Theory and former Dean of the School of Music at the University of South Carolina, passed away on March 11, 2010, in Cincinnati. She was 75, and had suffered from Parkinson’s disease for several years.

A native of Cincinnati, Dorothy received undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Eastman School of Music, where she later taught theory and ear training. She also taught at Pacific Lutheran University and the University of Texas, and chaired the music departments at the University of Connecticut and the University of Arizona. She was a regular consultant for the Educational Testing Service and served on the Executive Board and Accreditation Board for the National Association of Schools of Music. She was co-author of Tonal Harmony, a best-selling college theory text, and she received Teaching Excellence awards from both Eastman and the University of Texas. She also served for several years as organist at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Columbia, and performed regularly with her siblings in their biennial family piano recitals.

Dorothy was renowned as a teacher and beloved by her students, her colleagues, and her friends. She was known for her generosity, her quick wit both in and out of the classroom, and her passion for teaching.

Memorials may be made to the Dorothy K. Payne Music Library Endowment, which was established in the fall of 1999 by an anonymous donor to honor the life and work of Dr. Payne, an exemplary and dedicated teacher in the USC School of Music and its dean from 1994 to 1998. This endowment serves to recognize Dr. Payne's outstanding service and total commitment to the USC School of Music and the University Libraries.

The Dorothy K. Payne Music Library Endowment will provide funds to support the Music Library in the acquisition and preservation of materials, general care of the collections, and related programs.

The first items purchased with funds from the endowment interest were two facsimiles of piano music, Fantasien für Klavier, op. 116, composed in 1892 by Johannes Brahms, and Iberia by Isaac Albéniz. Composed between 1905 and 1908, Iberia is considered the greatest piano work in all Spanish musical literature. Consisting of four books, each containing three pieces, the work represents the composer's impressions of his native Spain.

The next purchase was fifty-eight ozalid scores of guitar and piano music, choral works, and songs, all inscribed by the Italian composer Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco (1895–1968). Castelnuovo-Tedesco was a composer of orchestral, dramatic, chamber, and film music who was best known for his almost 100 works for guitar. After relocating to the U.S. in 1939, he became one of the most sought after teachers of film music. His pupils included Goldsmith, Mancini, Previn, and John Williams. This acquisition and existing primary source materials in the Music Library combine to create the largest Castelnuovo-Tedesco special collection in the world.

An Edison cylinder player and a Clarophonic Gramophone were purchased in 2004, both dating from the early twentieth century. The acquisition of these two historical playback machines enables the library to play its collection of over 400 Edison cylinders and nearly 10,000 78s.

Since 2006, the Payne endowment has enabled the library to subscribe to the Naxos Digital Music Library, which provides access to nearly 600,000 audio tracks from over 40,000 CDs from the Naxos, Marco Polo, and other licensed independent labels. The majority of the recordings are classical music, but it includes jazz, blues, and world music, as well. New releases are added monthly. Access to this online listening service is available 24 hours a day to all campus users at:

In 2009, the Payne endowment provided for the addition of a second 24-hour streaming audio service to complement Naxos. DRAM is a scholarly resource of recordings, particularly strong in American and twentieth-century music. Major labels are represented, including New World Records, CRI, Albany, Cedille, and Mode. Complete liner notes are included for each recording.

Edison Diamond Disc player - 'Sheraton' model C-150
Edison Diamond Disc player
"Sheraton" model C-150

The most recent purchase from the Payne endowment was an Edison Diamond Disc player, also known as a disc phonograph. This player, a "Sheraton" model C-150, cost $150 when released between 1915 and 1919. These players play only the thicker Edison Diamond Discs, which require a diamond-shaped stylus.



For more information, please contact us.

Deferred Gifts | Current Endowments and Funds | Naming Opportunities
Contact Us | Development Home Page


Columbia Departments Campus Libraries
Columbia Libraries and Collections