Researching People: Secondary Sources

To find information on the life and work of a playwright, performer, director, designer, or other person in the performing arts, consult secondary sources such as these:

Researching People: Primary Sources

The lives and careers of people in the theatre can be documented with various types of primary sources, all of which are represented in the Harvard Theatre Collection. Primary sources found in the Theatre Collection include: 

  • Newspaper Clippings
  • Theatre Reviews (also available in E-Resources, above)
  • Playbills (organized by title of production, date, and theatre)
  • Prints & Photographs
  • Posters
  • Interviews
  • Letters

Some of these resources are individually cataloged in HOLLIS.  Others are arranged in larger series that are catalogued only at a summary level. You can request that library staff search for sources on a particular person. Fill in the necessary information on the Special Collections Request System, including the series call number (a list of call numbers is in the Instructions for requesting items from a series). Be sure to include the person's name in the "Volume/Box/Folder/Item" field. For more information on filling out the form, see Placing Requests.

Case Study: David Garrick

Selected secondary sources:

Primary Sources:

  • The Theatre Collection holds manuscripts, prints, portraits, and a life mask of the English actor. The Collection itself was founded in 1901 with a gift of 219 engraved portraits of Garrick.