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The Fine Arts Divisionís film, theater, and television collections include a wide variety of electronic, print, and audiovisual resources for use by scholars, practitioners and interested laypersons alike. Some of these collections may also serve as an introduction to Dallasís performing arts community.
Both general film aficionados and specialized researchers will find circulating and reference materials on cinema and television history and extensive biographical information on American and international directors and performers, along with print and video/DVD resources on more technical aspects of filmmaking. Many scholarly and popular magazines on all aspects of show business and cinema studies are also accessible for use within the Library. The Division also offers hundreds of DVD versions of films and television series both classic and contemporary, available for a seven-day checkout.
In addition, on many Saturday afternoons, the Fine Arts Division offers free classic film showings, utilizing the 4th floorís video wall. Some month-long series may focus on particular cinema genres or themes, such as film noir, westerns, science fiction, and Oscar-winning performances.
The Fine Arts Divisionís reference and circulating theater holdings include the history of live performance both in America and throughout the world, plus biographies of seminal directors, designers, and performers. Patrons will also find instructional and vocational materials on acting, directing, set and costume designing, lighting, stage managing, technical producing, and creating a theatre troupe from scratch, among many other topics.
For persons doing research on local and national theater productions from years past, the Division offers extensive reference files of original playbills, photographs, reviews, and other historical records. A large number of theatre-related periodicals are also available for use within the Library.
In addition, two special collections focusing on Dallasís own unique theatrical history are available to interested scholars. The Dallas Theater Center Archives, documenting the organizationís business and creative history from 1954 to1984, are housed in the Division; and portions of the Margo Jones Collection, which is shared with the Libraryís seventh floor Texas/Dallas Division, are also accessible as reference materials.
In the spirit of community outreach, the Fine Arts Division periodically sponsors appearances by Dallas-area theatre/performance groups in the 4th floor Performance Space and the Lillian Bradshaw Gallery. Participants have included the South Dallas Cultural Center, Echo Theatre, Texas Radio Theatre, and the Dallas Storytellers Guild.