Summary Information
Title: G. Norman Reis Papers
Collection Number: CTC.1985.01

Collection Dates: 1909-1946
Extent: 3.5 linear feet

Language: English

Abstract:
The Papers of G. Norman Reis primarily include materials from the Cap and Gown Club, a male musical comedy group of the University of Pittsburgh. The collection includes: programs, scripts, music, news clippings, financial records, correspondence, films, photographs, scrapbooks, personal papers and phonograph records from the period of 1909-1946. Digital reproductions of the collection are available electronically.
Publisher:

ULS Special Collections Department
University of Pittsburgh Library System
Hillman Library, Room 363
3960 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA, 15260
412-648-8190
uls-specialcollections@mail.pitt.edu
Date Published:

2004
Author:

Finding aid prepared by William Daw. Revisions occurred to the finding aid as a part of the encoding process on March 24, 2006.
Revision Description:
July 1, 2006:
Converted from EAD Version 1.0 to EAD Version 2002

Biography

G. Norman Reis was born on February 23, 1893 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was a member of the class of 1916 at the University of Pittsburgh and served as a veteran contributor to the University's Cap and Gown Club - an all male organization devoted to the production of annual musical comedy shows. Beginning with the 1913 show, Prince of Sham, Reis collaborated with men, such as Gus Schnabel and Louis Fushan, on the book of lyrics used in many of the club's productions. In addition, he served on many committees and held offices in the club from the time of his earliest association until his death in 1958. These productions always used original books, lyrics, and music contributed by students at the University or by alumni members of the Cap and Gown Club. Many important figures had their earliest training and experience with the Cap and Gown including Regis Toomey, motion picture and musical comedy star, Woodman Thompson, a scenic designer, and Gene Kelly, dancer, instructor and director.

Reis was employed as a bacteriologist at U.S. Steel. He was an avid photographer, and, for a brief period, served as the official photographer for the Pitt Alumni Review as well as chairman and member of the editorial board. He died at the age of 65, three months after his retirement.


Collection Scope and Content Notes

The personal papers of G. Norman Reis pertain predominantly to the University of Pittsburgh's Cap and Gown Club, including souvenir and leaf programs, scripts, music, news clippings, financial records, correspondence, films, photographs, scrapbooks, and phonograph records. These categories are not complete in any of the cases. Besides individual music scores, music can also be found in some souvenir programs.

Items not associated with the Cap and Gown Club include Reis' script, Harmony Island, the Pittsburgh Athletic Association's 1917 drama club presentation, and unidentified scripts. There are also materials on other all-male musical comedy groups such as Mask and Wig (University of Pennsylvania) and Triangle Club (Princeton University) programs and/or sheet music, University of Pittsburgh fight songs, including a victory song with words by Reis, miscellaneous music, as well as several issues of the Pitt Alumni Review for which Reis served as chairman and member of the editorial board.


Arrangement

Series I. Personal Memorabilia

Series II. Dramatic Productions Other than Cap and Gown

Series III. Sheet Music

Series IV. Cap and Gown Productions

Series V. Cap and Gown Productions: Oversized Materials


Subject Terms

Topics
  • Bacteriologists -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburgh
  • College and school drama, American -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburgh
  • College theater -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburgh
  • College theater -- United States
  • Student activities -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburgh
  • Theater -- United States

Corporate Names
  • Cap and Gown Club (Pittsburgh, Pa.).
  • Pittsburgh Athletic Association.
  • Princeton University. Triangle Club.
  • University of Pennsylvania. Mask and Wig Club.

Personal Names
  • Kelly, Gene, 1912-1996
  • Reis, G. Norman, 1893-1958
  • Thompson, Woodman
  • Toomey, Regis, 1902-

Genres/Forms
  • Theater programs

Category
  • Theater

Access and Use
Access Restrictions:

No restrictions.

Acquisition Information:

Gift of Helen Whitlinger in 1985.

Alternate Format:

Digital reproductions of the collection are available electronically. Selected photographs were scanned and added to the University of Pittsburgh Historic Photographs collection.Digital reproductions of the collection are available electronically at [URL].

Preferred Citation:

G. Norman Reis Papers, 1909-1946, CTC.1985.01, Curtis Theatre Collection, Special Collections Department, University of Pittsburgh.

Previous Citation:

G. Norman Reis Papers, 1909-1946, CTC.17, Curtis Theatre Collection, Special Collections Department, University of Pittsburgh

Processing Information:

This collection was processed by Special Collections Staff and by William Daw and Ellen Whitham in summer 2004.

Processing Information:

Revision and rearrangement for the encoded version of the finding aid provided by Charles Stanford in March 2006. Information about the collection title and the controlled access terms was extracted from the MARC record in the University of Pittsburgh catalog Voyager ID number: 1470176.

Copyright:

Permission for publication is given on behalf of the University of Pittsburgh as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

Related Material:

Cap and Gown Club Records, 1908-1978, CTC.1980.01, Curtis Theatre Collection, Special Collections Department, University of Pittsburgh


Collection Inventory

Series I. Personal Memorabilia

Scope and Content Notes:

There are three folders of Personal Memorabilia consisting of news clippings from 1941 through 1946, several copies of the Alumni Review and Pitt Panther.


Box 1
Folder 1 News Clippings
Folder 2 Alumni Review, 1941-44, 1946
Folder 3 Pitt Panther, March 1930

Series II. Dramatic Productions Other than Cap and Gown

Scope and Content Notes:

Series II contains items concerning dramatic productions other than the Cap and Gown Club.

Folder 4 Harmony Island Script and Publicity
Folder 5 Unidentified Scripts
Folder 6 Mask and Wig (U. of Penna.) Program

Series III. Sheet Music

Scope and Content Notes:

This series contains miscellaneous music that was not used for Cap and Gown productions. The four folders of material include a booklet of Songs of the University of Pittsburgh, Pitt Victory Song with words by G. Norman Reis and Louis M. Fushan and music by Benjamin Levant, and music from the Mask and Wig (Folder 8) and Triangle Clubs at the University of Pittsburgh and Princeton (Folder 9).

Folder 7 Songs of the University of Pittsburgh, Pitt Victory Song
Folder 8 There's No Place like Your Arms from All Around the Town
Folder 9 Happy the Day from Take It Away, Can it Be True? from Fol-De-Rol. 1936;
Folder 10 Miscellaneous Sheet Music

Series IV. Cap and Gown Productions

Scope and Content Notes:

This series includes materials related to the Cap and Gown Club listed chronologically by production. It contains souvenir and/or leaf programs, scripts, phonograph records, musical scores, news clippings, other miscellaneous promotional material, and 16-millimeter films. Each of the productions contains some or all of the materials previously mentioned. The 16-millimeter films are shelved independently from their corresponding productions at the end of the series. It also includes financial records and correspondence pertaining to the Club's productions. Items marked with an asterisk (*) have the music for the production in the program.

Folder 11-12 When Pitt Was Young - Programs and Scripts
Folder 13 Little Suffragettes - Scripts
Folder 14 The Maxixe Girl - Programs and News Clippings

Box 2
Folder 1-2 Suite 16 - Programs and Musical Scores
Folder 3 The Diamond Girl - Musical Scores: The Diamond Girl lyrics only.
Folder 4 Mary Grow Round* - Programs
Folder 5-6 Yip-Yip* - Programs and Scripts
Folder 7 Manhattan Preferred* - Programs
Folder 8-9 What's Up* - Programs and Scripts
Folder 10-11 The Silver Domino* - Programs, News Clippings, and Scripts
Folder 12 All to the Point* - Programs, News Clippings and Nixon Theatre Program with Advertisement
Folder 13 Hello Again* - Programs
Folder 14-15 In the Soup* - Programs and Scripts

Box 3
Folder 1-2 Out for the Count* - Programs and Scripts
Folder 3-4 Trailor Ho!* - Programs and Scripts
Folder 5 Pickets, Please* - Programs and Alumni Review
Folder 6-7 At Your Service - Programs, News Clippings, Alumni Review, and Scripts
Folder 8-9 At Your Service - Musical Scores
Folder 10-11 At Your Service - Phonograph Record: Nothing is too Perfect for You (side 1) Diary of Dreams (side 2) - 2 copies

Box 4
Folder 1-2 Snap Your Fingers - Programs and Musical Scores
Folder 3-5 Head Over Heels* - Programs, Scripts, and Musical Scores
Folder 6-7 Kilroy Is Here - Programs and Scripts
Folder 8 Cap and Gown Music 1940 - Phonograph Record
Folder 9 Financial Reports - Receipts and expenditures for 1931-1941
Folder 10 Correspondence: from Louis M. Fushan to G. Norman Reis
Folder 11 Films -- All to the Point, (contains shots of Gene Kelly) and Silver Domino, 1932-1933
Folder 12 Films -- Hello Again, 1934
Folder 13 Films -- In the Soup, 1935
Folder 14 Films -- Out for the Count, 1936
Folder 15 Films -- Trailer Ho!, 1937
Folder 16 Films -- Unidentified Cap and Gown Production

Series V. Cap and Gown Productions: Oversized Materials

Scope and Content Notes:

This series includes oversized materials related to the Cap and Gown Club listed chronologically by production. It contains musical scores, photographs, and scrapbooks. Each of the productions contains some or all of the materials previously mentioned.


Box 1
Folder 1 Little Suffragettes Music: You're the Girl For Me; At the Movies
Folder 2 The Maxixe Girl Music: The Lad in the Uniform
Folder 3 The Maxixe Girl Photographs
Folder 4 At Your Service Photographs
Folder 5 The Red Moon and Miss Mannequin Scrapbook
Folder 6 Yip-Yip Scrapbook: compiled by Ted Savage
Folder 7 Manhattan Preferred Scrapbook: compiled by Ted Savage
Folder 8 Hello Again Scrapbook

Box 2
Folder 1 Pickets, Please! Photographs
Folder 2 Snap Your Fingers Photographs
Folder 3 Miscellaneous Photographs