Many universities have a music library for their music majors to use. However, sometimes they only have one copy of a piece of music…and it can take months for it to get back onto the shelf for someone else to check out.
Don’t music libraries allow you to reserve a piece of music in the same way that libaries hold books? I.e. if you register that you want it, it doesn’t get put on the shelf, but is held for you?
Yes, I think they do. However, I remember in college that you could effectively have apiece of music out all semester long by 1) checking it out, and 2) extending the check out period. They would let music majors do this because a student might need the music for a recital they were preparing over the entire semester. So, only one person would have that music every semester. If the hold list was more than two people long – you would be waiting a year before you could get the music. Sometimes the wait lists were 10+ people long.
…I’ve never heard of or experienced this. If you’re going to be using a piece for months, you’re probably working on it a lot and performing it, in which case wouldn’t you either photocopy it or buy your own copy so you can fill it with your own markings and have it if you play it again/if you ever have students that play it?
You could, but then there is a certain unspoken rule in the music world that if you are going to perform a piece, then you must purchase it unless you were using a library copy as such.
This has definitely happened within our percussion studio for sure! The two solo books by a certain composer (Keiko Abe) are very expensive to purchase so occasionally two or three people will be trying to get them out of the library XD