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Cataloging Printed Materials

General Rules

0A. Scope [2.0A]

These guidelines focus on printed materials that document performances or events, particularly librettos and scenarios, playbills (both collections and single items), programs and souvenir programs, promptbooks, acting editions, and other published printed items. For definitions of these formats see the Glossary.

Examples for all of these types are included throughout the guidelines, as appropriate.

0B. Sources of information [2.0B]

The chief source of information for individual items is the title page. If there is no title page, use information found on the cover or the item itself.

0B1. The following order of preference is recommended for sources of information for items that have a title page (librettos and scenarios, promptbooks, and acting editions):

  • title page
  • cover
  • other information on item
  • other accompanying materials (e.g. correspondence, donor information, records, publicity, inventories)
  • other sources, including reference tools for performing arts and printed materials

0B2. For playbills and broadsides, the chief source of information is the item itself.

0B3. For programs and souvenir programs, the chief source of information is the cover and the bill of the performance or event regardless of its location in the item.

0B4. For collections or programs being treated as serial publications, the chief source of information is the finding aid, if available, or the content of the items themselves.

0C. Punctuation [2.0C]

Follow AACR2 and ISBD rules for punctuation (see Appendix for punctuation rules).

0D. Levels of detail in the description [1.0D]

0D1. For librettos, scenarios, and acting editions, records should include at least the following elements:

Level 1:
Title proper / statement(s) of responsibility. -- date(s). -- physical description. -- subject and other added entries.

Level 2:
Title proper / statement(s) of responsibility. -- place of publication, publisher, date(s). -- physical description. -- partial cast and credit note(s). -- subject and other added entries.

Level 3:
Title proper / statement(s) of responsibility. -- place of publication, publisher, date(s). -- physical description. -- full cast and credit note(s). - additional notes. -- subject and other added entries.

0D2a. For playbills and programs cataloged individually, include:

Level 1:
Title proper. -- date(s). -- physical description. -- subject and other added entries.

Level 2:
Title proper. -- date(s) and place of publication. -- physical description. -- partial cast and credit note(s) -- subject and other added entries

Level 3:
Title proper. -- date(s) and place of publication. -- physical description. - full cast and credit note(s) -- additional notes. -- subject and other added entries

0D2b. For playbills and programs and souvenir programs cataloged collectively, include:

Level 1:
Title proper. -- date span. -- statement of extent. -- subject and other added entries.

Level 2:
Title proper. -- date span and publication information. -- statement of extent. -- subject and other added entries.

Level 3:
Title proper. -- date span and publication information. -- statement of extent. -- notes. -- subject and other added entries.

Alternatively, if access to detailed information in individual programs is needed, create group or collection level records providing bibliographic information and a separate finding aid with additional information, such as production details, etc. (See sample template in Appendix.)

0D3.For promptbooks include:

Level 1:

Title proper / statement(s) of responsibility. -- date(s) and place of execution. -- physical description. -- subject and other added entries.

Level 2:

Title proper / statement(s) of responsibility. -- date(s) and place of execution. -- physical description. -- note(s) describing markings. -- subject and other added entries.

Level 3:

Title proper / statement(s) of responsibility. -- date(s) and place of execution. -- physical description. -- note(s) describing markings. -- partial cast and credit note(s). -- subject and other added entries.

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