The library of the Staatliches Institut für Musikforschung is a musicological research library which primarily serves the institute's staff. Nevertheless, it's reading room is open to the public and external visitors may borrow books from the library, with certain restrictions.

Opening hours

From Saturday, 14 March 2020 onwards, the Library of the Staatliches Institut für Musikforschung will be closed until further notice. This measure is intended to minimise the spread of the coronavirus. We ask our visitors for their understanding.

Information for Visitors

A library card can be issued to anyone over the age of 18 who is a legal resident of Berlin. Applicants are requested to bring a personal identity card or passport and a police registration document. The annual utilisation fee is 15 - for a card with borrowing privileges. Persons who have reached the age of 16, may be issued an annual pass for use of collection in the reading room of the SIMPK only, after submitting valid identification documents and paying a registration fee of 5,- EUR. The library card is issued without further cost if the applicant already has an annual pass from any other library of the    Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz.

The loan period is 30 days. It can be extended up to three times by phone, fax or in writing. Thereafter, the books need to be presented at the library for further renewal. If the loan period has been exceeded, the fee is 1,- EUR per book per commenced week.

The library's regulations on fees and usage, all listed fees for library services, the leaflet for the usage of special collections in the library as well as all necessary forms can be found online:



As part of the library network of the Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz the library of the SIMPK belongs to the GBV (Gemeinsamer Bibliotheksverbund); its    Online-Catalogue has not been completed yet. To date, the catalogue contains all acquisitions after January 2003, as well as selected parts of the collection in accordance with the research projects of the institute. The card index (alphabetical catalogue, systematic catalogue, keyword catalogue and an index for articles) contains all older titles. Books published prior to 1990 are also represented by the    Berliner Gesamtkatalog (BGK) with the ID B 763 for the SIMPK. All periodicals are also covered in the    Zeitschriftendatenbank (ZDB). Archival documents and letters can be retrieved via the portal    Kalliope.


The library has a reading room with twelve workplaces and a carrel which can be used on request by scholars for long-term projects. Every workplace is equipped with an electrical outlet for laptops; audio-equipment and a micromedia-readerprinter are located in a separate carrel. Two computer workstations provide access to the following online resources and databases: RILM Abstracts of Music Literature, Oxford Music Online (incl. Grove Music Online), JSTOR, Periodicals Index Online and DIGIZeitschriften.

Collections and focus of acquisition

The library of the SIMPK owns approximately 57,000 bibliographic items, most of them accessible on site. The library holds nearly 200 current periodicals. The focus of new acquisitions is mainly oriented towards the research projects of the institute: music theory, music history, organology and systematic musicology. The library is part of the German and international interlibrary loan system. As a special collection, the SIMPK possesses the library of the music critic and author Hans Heinz Stuckenschmidt (1901-1988). The collection consists mainly of books, records as well as printed music of the 20th century.

Manuscript archive and collection of photographic reproductions

The library collection also includes a manuscript archive with about 650 music manuscripts (about 320 of them autographs), more than 6,000 letters by musicians - partly from the estates of Joseph Joachim, Franz Wüllner and August Eduard Grell, early photographic reproductions ("photocopies") of music manuscripts and prints, as well as the estates of important figures of the musical scene. Please note that the use of manuscripts, photocopies and material from the estates is only possible upon prior arrangement.

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