Multimedia Library

The multimedia library at IRCAM is open to the public from Tuesday to Friday from 2 to 5:30pm. The entrance can be found through the building’s main entrance.

Access to the reading room is free, open to all, and does not require registration. Borrowing documents is subject to conditions and to an annual fee.

The catalogue

The collections

The IRCAM multimedia library is a resource center on contemporary music as well as  music and sound science and technology. Currently boasting 35,000 documents, its collection is constantly being expanded in connection to the Institute's musical programming and research activities.

The reading room is open for consultation in situ and it is possible to borrow documents from our  collection of books, scores, periodicals, theses, sound recordings, films, and concert programs. Databases offer a wealth of online musical and scientific resources.

The collections described below are referenced in the catalogue:

  • A collection of approximately 13,000 books dedicated to the following areas:
    • music from 1945 to the present day (theory, aesthetics, composers, instrumental techniques)
    • the history of music and other arts since antiquity (dance, theatre, visual arts)
    • sciences and technologies related to music and sound (signal processing, sound synthesis, instrumental acoustics, room acoustics, computer music, psychoacoustics)

The entire collection is contextualized by the presence of books on history, philosophy, linguistics, and sociology.

  • About fifty subscriptions to periodicals in the fields of music creation, computer music, acoustics, perception and sound technologies.
  • More than 400 theses and dissertations in musicology and acoustics, signal processing and computer science applied to music.
  • Nearly 9,000 scores, mainly works from the 20th and 21st centuries, and in particular the repertoire performed at IRCAM. In addition, there are about 1,000 volumes of critical editions (from Baroque to modern times).
  • About 1,300 CDs and 150 vinyl records devoted to music from the 20th century to the present day, and 200 films (portraits of composers, documentaries, performance recordings).

Musical Databases Accessible On Site 

Databases are accessible from the multimedia library's computer workstations:

  • BabelScores: offers a wide catalogue of contemporary music works allowing the online consultation of scores while listening to the work.
  • Maison ONA: offers a catalogue of contemporary music works allowing the online consultation of scores.
  • International Index to Music Periodicals Full Text: summaries and abstracts of more than 500 periodicals devoted to music in all its aspects (musical training, performance, ethnomusicology, musical theatre, theory and composition, etc.). 140 periodicals are available in full text.
  • International Index to Performing Arts Full Text: summaries and abstracts of more than 260 periodicals, about 100 of which are available in full text, in the fields of dance, drama, theatre, scenography, musical theatre, circus, opera, film, etc.

Useful Information

Library Card

Lending is possible upon presentation of one of these supporting documents:

  • to composers and performers
  • to students in Master 1 and 2 programs
  • to doctoral students enrolled in a department of musicology or art
  • to teachers and researchers working in secondary, higher education, music education, or research institutions
  • to all persons who make a request in writing to the multimedia library

The library reserves the right not to grant the permission to borrow documents. 

The card is valid for one year from the date of registration.

Documents required for a library card:

  • 40 € (or 26 € for students, job seekers, IRCAM Card holders) by cheque or cash
  • a passport size photo
  • proof of eligibility to borrow materials (student card, professional card, contract, pay slip)
  • a 50€ deposit by cheque
  • the membership form completed on site or downloaded here

Lending Rules

  • Quantity and Duration: 4 documents (books or scores) and 4 discs for a period of 15 days, renewable once. Periodicals can not be borrowed. 
  • Overdue Materials: a delay in the return of documents results in a borrowing ban for a period equal to the delay.
  • Unreturned Materials: in the event of loss of a document, it must be reimbursed; otherwise, the deposit cheque of 50 € will be cashed.

Access Conditions for IRCAM staff and Collaborators

Anyone holding an IRCAM staff card has access to the multimedia library during opening hours. Registration is mandatory. Loans are free and a library card is issued on presentation of the IRCAM card and an ID photo.

The lending rules are as follows: 6 documents and 6 discs for a period of 15 days, renewable once. Materials can not be borrowed during the last month of the contract.

Information 01 44 78 47 44 | info-mediatheque (at) ircam.fr

  • © Philippe Barbosa
    © Philippe Barbosa
  • © Philippe Barbosa
    © Philippe Barbosa
  • © Philippe Barbosa
    © Philippe Barbosa
  • © Philippe Barbosa
    © Philippe Barbosa