Visual Music: Mary Greenewalt at HSP

A University of the Arts alumna’s work is at the center of a Historical Society of Pennsylvania event on Thursday, January 27, 2011. Mary Elizabeth Hallock Greenewalt, an 1893 graduate of the Philadelphia Musical Academy (today’s UArts School of Music), was known for her invention of the nourathar, an organ that displayed color scored to music (she also invented the rheostat, or light dimmer!). The Historical Society event will feature composers performing their own work inspired by Greenewalt and her papers, now available to researchers at the Historical Society and on exhibit for the event. One of the composers is UArts faculty member Andrea Clearfield.

Greenewalt seated at one of her inventions. This image taken from

Intrigued by the nourathar? To find out more you can read UArts Music Librarian Mark Germer’s essay on Greenewalt, published in an earlier library newsletter.

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