Harvard Theatre Collection Curator – Harvard University – Boston, MA

Duties & Responsibilities
Harvard University invites applications and nominations for the Curator of the Harvard Theatre Collection (HTC).   The Curator provides vision, leadership, advocacy, interpretation, and passion for the collection and serves as the catalyst and coordinator for a dynamic group of activities and individuals dedicated to connecting the holdings of the HTC to Harvard faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, and an international community of scholars, writers, composers, artists, and other researchers.  The Curator develops, hones, and implements a strategy for building the collection through gifts and purchases that add to the existing strengths of the collection and forge new areas that support ongoing and emerging research in the performing arts.  The Curator represents the HTC to individuals and groups of faculty, students, researchers, donors, the theatre community, the media, and other external constituents.  The successful candidate will possess deep subject knowledge of at least one major component of the collection; the ability to master over time the broad range of subject areas represented in the collection; enthusiasm for working with faculty and students; proclivity for adopting new technologies that will improve access to and use of HTC holdings; and a collaborative and collegial outlook and spirit.

Typical Duties & Responsibilities include the following.  Other duties may be assigned.

  • Establishes and implements vision and strategic and annual goals for the HTC.
  • Manages the HTC budget for acquisitions and programs.
  • Collaborates with faculty to design and host classes that allow students to learn directly from the primary source holdings of the HTC.
  • Promotes the HTC by planning , managing, and creating content for a robust program of exhibitions, lectures, symposia, performances, publications, and other activities that present and interpret the holdings of the HTC for a wide set of audiences.
  • Works with dealers, private collectors, and donors to develop the collections through purchase and gift.
  • Participates in development efforts by cultivating donors and preparing funding proposals for gifts and grants.
  • Provides expert reference and research consultation for users of the HTC and, as appropriate, the holdings of Houghton Library.
  • Assists with the cataloging and archival processing of new acquisitions and materials in backlogs by assessing collections, establishing priorities, and providing input on records and finding aids.
  • Collaborates with librarians and library staff at Houghton, Harvard, and other institutions, as well as scholars and students, to identify, plan, and execute projects that supply access to HTC holdings in digital form, so that they can be discovered and utilized using emerging research and teaching methodologies.
  • Identifies items in need of conservation treatment and works with staff to develop and review treatment plans.
  • Coordinates with Houghton registrar to handle loan requests.
  • Collaborates with Houghton administration, fellow curators, and other staff to publicize, select, and manage research fellowships.
  • As a member of the Collections Division, works with fellow Houghton Curators and other staff on long-range and annual planning and the development and implementation of curatorial policies and procedures.

Basic Qualifications

  • Graduate degree (master’s or doctoral) in a relevant discipline such as library and information science or archival studies and/or in an appropriate subject discipline.
  • Minimum 3 years work experience in a library or archives, preferably in special collections in an academic research library.
  • Advanced knowledge of at least one of the major HTC subject areas and ability to master over time the wide range of subject areas represented in the collection.
  • Record of scholarly production and professional activities.
  • Knowledge of the antiquarian book market.
  • Knowledge of current practices and emerging trends in performing arts research and creative processes.
  • Experience teaching with primary sources and working with students in classroom settings.
  • Knowledge of cataloging, archival processing, digitization, and conservation methodologies and standards.
  • Knowledge of intellectual property and scholarly communication issues and trends related to libraries, archives, and special collections.
  • Demonstrated abilities to manage programs and complete projects that require collaboration with a wide variety of colleagues.
  • Working knowledge of at least one modern European language beyond English.

Additional Qualifications

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Excellent organizational, time, and project management skills.
  • Ability to work creatively, collaboratively, and effectively both as a team member and independently and to promote teamwork among colleagues.

Additional Information
Continued from Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Collaborates as appropriate with staff of library collections and programs at Harvard, whose missions align with the HTC, such as Harvard College Library Collection Development, the Loeb Music Library, the Harvard Film Archives, the Office of the Arts at Harvard, the Dramatic Arts at Harvard, and the American Repertory Theater.
  • Participates and assumes leadership roles in appropriate groups in Houghton Library, the Harvard Libraries, and the University.
  • Cultivates and maintains a strong presence in the research and performance communities of the major HTC subject areas and in the library and archives profession

Supervisory Responsibilities:
May supervise staff, students, and interns, as needed.