Dr. Julius A. Elias found time throughout his distinguished career as a popular teacher and visionary administrator at the University of Connecticut to share his lifelong passion for opera with his students and colleagues. Thanks to his family’s benevolence, the Ruth A. Haas Library’s 2008 acquisition of the Julius A. Elias Collection — a vast personal library of opera performances spanning more than four decades that includes approximately 5,000 LP records, as well as several hundred video tapes, published scores and reference works — will share his passion with present and future generations of students and faculty at WestConn.
“The Elias collection is interesting because it offers a fairly comprehensive collection of operatic performances recorded from the late 1940s to the late 1980s,” Archivist and Special Collections Librarian Brian Stevens said of the collection, preserved in an archive room on the lower level of the Haas Library. “There will be performances in here that have not been put on CD, and may in fact play better on vinyl.”
The Elias collection is available for listening and research by appointment with the university archivist. A finding-aid guide will enable the public to browse titles of LP holdings in the collection, and items will be archived for the purpose of creating a formal library catalogue facilitating searches for a specific work, performance, conductor, orchestra and lead singers.