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Max Steiner Music Society records

Identifier: MSS 2108

Scope and Contents

Contains publications produced by or with the Max Steiner Music Society, and other publications collected by the Society that feature Max Steiner or his film music composition work. Also contains records of society activities, such as photographs, letters, articles used in society publications, and sound recordings of Max Steiner music on audiocassette, phonograph record, and audiotape, some of which was distributed by the society as part of a music catalog. Collection also contains material collected by the society that honors or otherwise relates to Max Steiner, such as music scores, ephemera, obituaries, tribute programs, and memorial programs from services for Max Steiner and his wife, Lee Steiner. Dated approximately 1890 to 2009, with the bulk of material dated 1965 to 1988.


  • approximately 1890-2009
  • Majority of material found within 1965-1988


Language of Materials

The majority of materials are in English. Some materials are also in French, German, and Dutch.

Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to use material from this collection must be obtained from Reference Services at

Administrative History

The Max Steiner Music Society was an active organization from 1965 to 1981. It was established by Albert K. Bender and operated out of Kankakee, Illinois. The society’s stated purpose was, "Aiming to perpetuate the mmusic of Max Steiner." The society gathered and distributed research and writings centered around the historical and critical appreciation of the film music scoring of Max Steiner, who has been called the "father of film music." International in scope, the society published these writings in regular journals, annuals, and bulletins primarily in America and Europe, but also throughout the world. It also maintained a music catalog of Max Steiner’s work, from which it distributed audio recordings. The society also recognized the accomplishments of other film music scores by presenting the Max Steiner Award.


11 boxes (5.5 linear ft.)

1 carton (1 linear ft.)

7 oversize boxes (7 linear ft.)

3 oversize folders (0.3 linear ft.)


Materials are arranged in four series: 1. Max Steiner Music Society publications, 1965-2000. 2. Max Steiner Music Society collection of publications, 1932-2009. 3. Max Steiner Music Society administrative records, 1890-1999. 4. Max Steiner Music Society audio and video recordings, 1928-1981.

Custodial History

Collection was donated by the Max Steiner Music Society to Brigham Young University in 1981. Other installments were later donated in 1983, 1984, 1985, 1988, 1999, and 2002.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated; Max Steiner Music Society; 1981 April. Donated; Albert K. Bender; 1983 July. Donated; Albert K. Bender; June 1984. Donated; Albert K. Bender; 1985 September. Donated; Albert K. Bender; 1988. Donated; Albert K. Bender; 1999 March. Donated; 1999. Donated; Albert K. Bender; 2002 August.


Film Music Archives (Arts and Communications collecting policy; March 2020).

Related Materials

See also the Max Steiner papers (MSS 1547).

Processing Information

Processed; Blaise Myers, Deven Hunsaker, Karen Glenn; 2021; All materials re-housed. Papers retained together in original folder groupings, but placed in overall arrangement indicated by the curator.

  • Duplicates of biographies, photocopies of clippings.
Register of Max Steiner Music Society records
2021 January
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States