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Music (classical & jazz) & Music Technology: Sheet Music & Musical Scores

PMLL HE Licence (Printed Music Publishing Limited) p also known as HEPML (Higher Education Printed Music Licence) Printed Music

BCU are trialling a new Higher Education Music Licence that enables staff and students engaged on music courses to copy a limited amount of still-in-copyright sheet music.

The licence echoes, to some degree, the entitlement granted by the CLA Copyright Licensing Agency) licence for the copying of print text such as books and journal articles.

 There is a new form at the bottom of the digitisation request page specifically for requesting digital copies of sheet music with more information about the licence. 

Students should request copies via their Head of Department.

Here is a simple outline of this licence.

There are list available of:

  1. Signed-up publishers
  2. Exceptions/exclusions

Request or suggest that the Library buy Music or a Musical Score

Use the form here to suggest a piece of music or a musical score which you wish to perform or study but we do not have in stock - we will be happy to consider your suggestion

Finding Music and Scores via the Library catalogue

The easiest way to find music is via the Library Search.

New Sheet Music and Scores


Scores & Sheet Music Supplied by Birmingham City University

Baroque Sonatas                          785.752

Harp Music                                     787.5

Song Anthologies                          784.8

Bass Clarinet Music                      788.61

Horn Music                                     788.4

Songs                                               784.3

Bass Trombone Music                 788.3

Jazz (No instrument specified)   781.65136

Songs for Children/Schools         784.6

Bassoon Music                              788.8

Mallet Instruments (Marimba, Vibraphone, Xylophone                                    789.6

String Chamber Music                  785.772-9

Brass/Wind Chamber Music       785.782-9


Mixed Chamber Ensembles        785.792-9

Study Scores                                   780.84


Cantatas – Vocal Scores               783.4

Oboe Music                                    788.7

Tenor Horn Music                         788.42

Clarinet Music                                788.6

Opera Vocal Scores                      782.1

Timpani / Drum Music                 789.1

Collected Editions                         780.81-2

Oratorio Vocal Scores                  783.3

Trio Sonatas                                   785.753

Contrabassoon Music                   788.81

Organ Music                                   786.8

Trombone Music                           788.2

Cor Anglais Music                         788.71

Percussion Music                          789

Trumpet Music                              788.1

Cornet Music                                 788.1


Piano & Strings Chamber Music 785.763-9

Tuba Music                                     788.48

Double Bass Music                       787.4

Piano Duets                                    786.4956

Viola Music                                     787.2

Euphonium Music                         788.44


Piano Duos (2 Pianos)                  786.4957

Violin Music                                   787.1

Facsimile Scores                            780.81 ; 780.82


Piano Music                                    786.4

Violoncello (Cello) Music             787.3


Flute Music                                     788.5

Piccolo Music                                 788.51

Vocal Music (secular accompanied)   784.2

Full Scores (including jazz)          Q780.84

Recorder Music                             788.53

Vocal Music (secular unaccompanied)      784.1

Guitar Music                                  787.6

Saxophone Music                         788.66


Sheet music in the Library is shelved in room C018   

Searching the catalogue for sheet music is not as straightforward for books. Often the same piece will have different titles depending upon the language (Symphony, Symphonie, Sinfonia; Quartet, Quartette, Quatuor, etc. or its nickname (e.g. pastoral, Moonlight, Emperor, etc.). When we catalogue an item we try to give it a standardised title to make it easier to find but please ask for advice if you need help.

  • If you are looking for an particular song it may not have been catalogued individually.
  • If you do not find what you want please ask for help. If we do not have it then e-mail Francis who may be able to order it for you or complete the request form. If you are a member of staff who wishes to recommend material to be purchased you may e-mail Francis or complete the request form. There is also a pink request form available.
  • Some music may only be hired. Francis should be able to advise and help with this.
  • You can access our print and eBook collections through the Library Catalogue or via Library Search.

  • Scores: Full; Study; Facsimile Scores; Collected Works        

    Scores serve different functions and the Library tries to meet all of these needs.

  • Full orchestral scores for study or use in conducting. These are shelved at Q780.84 (Extra large ones at QQ780.84).
  • Miniature / study scores for study or to follow music to which you are listening. These are shelved at 780.84 and are in room C001 with CDs, LPs, DVDs.
  • Facsimiles of composer's manuscripts or or first/early printed editions. These are shelved at 780.81
  • Scores of the collected works or a composer. These are shelved at 780.81
  • Scores of works by more than one composer (or series such as Musica Britannica). These are shelved at 780.82

The sets of parts for Orchestral, Vocal, Brass Band, Wind Orchestra and Jazz Band ensembles are primarily for official Conservatoire performances.

Individual parts not for performance may be used in the Library but not taken out of it.

Some sets may be available for non-official performances but this is at the discretion of the Collection Management Librarian for Music, Francis Firth. If permission is granted a request card must be completed at least 48 hours before the music is required. The borrower is responsible for the safe return of all materials and agrees to pay for replacements.

If a set is not purchasable it may be possible to borrow it from another Library. There is a useful catalogue of orchestral and vocal sets called Encore

If if is not purchasable it may be possible to hire an orchestral (or, occasionally) vocal set. A useful source for discovering from whom orchestral sets may be hired is Zinfonia. which requires (free) registration.

The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire pays for the hire of sets for official performances. If you are arranging your own performance then it may be possible to arrange a hire but you would have to pay for it. Contact your Librarian, Francis Firth, to discuss this.

Royal Birmingam Conservatoire Archival Material in Curzon Library

The Curzon Library contains in room C003 the archives of Birmingham City University which includes those of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.

More information about the Records and Archive Centre: University Archive

There is a general outline of the collections in the guide to the Records and Archive Centre.

There is an list of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire archive holdings here.

Highlights of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire archive include:

Birmingham Composers Manuscript Collection

The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire holds manuscripts by a number of Birmingham composers, notably Herbert Lumby.

There is a partial catalogue by Michael Jones of this collection

and here is an updated version

There is also a list of the Herbert Lumby manuscripts.

Sir Granville Bantock manuscripts and related material

The main collection of manuscripts by Sir Granville Bantock, Principal of the new School of Music in the Birmingham and Midland Institute 1900-1934, resides at University of Birmingham but the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire archive includes some manuscripts, related material donated by Lady Bantock and some of the books donated by Bantock to the Library of the School of Music. 

Birmingham Flute Society Collection

The Birmingham Flute Society was founded in 1856 as the Birmingham Flute Trio and Quartet Society. After the Society was disbanded in 1954 the collection was passed to the then Birmingham School of Music By John Slade in 1965 when the Birmingham Midland Institute Building in Paradise Street was closed and demolished.

A more detailed history by Roz Trübger may be found on the website of Trübcher Music Publishing and it was also published:

Trübger, Roz (2013) : A historic predecessor to the BFS: The Birmingham Flute Society and its music. Pan: The journal of the British Flute Society, 32(2) 38-41

There is a print copy of the Birmingham Flute Society Catalogue of concerted music 1894 in the Curzon Library.

A PDF scan of that catalogue is available here Birmingham Flute Society Catalogue of concerted music 1894 You may also find a PDF version of the catalogue here Birmingham Flute Society Catalogue of concerted music 1894 

Royal College of Organists

The Curzon Library includes a key collection of music and books from the collection of the Royal College of Organists.

These materials may be borrowed by all members of Birmingham City University Library.

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