Thiman’s brother, Cedric, was for many years Head of Modern Languages at Nottingham High School. Cedric’s daughter, Frances (known to some as Celia) still lives in Nottingham, and she and Paul Hale, then Rector Chori of Southwell Minster, formed the idea that a collection of Thiman’s work might be housed in the new Paul Hale Choir Library in the Archbishop’s Palace at the Minster. (Read Frances Thiman's reflections on the Collection.)
The Palace re-opened following refurbishment in the autumn of 2014, and the launch of the Thiman Collection, with a related exhibition, was one of the first events to be held in the new facilities.
Guy Turner is the archivist of the Collection. He is a Lay Clerk in the Minster Choir and when he was a student in the early seventies, knew and sang for Dr Thiman in the Elysian Concert Society.
The first aim of the Collection is to acquire a copy of each of the pieces that Dr Thiman wrote. Anything of historical interest connected with him – recordings, photos, concert programmes, letters, press cuttings etc – is also being collected. In addition, a number of choral (and a few orchestral) sets of his music are held in the collection.
Many of Thiman’s friends and collaborators have contributed to the Collection, in particular Gerald Barnes, who worked closely with Dr Thiman in his latter years. The Royal Academy of Music Library has also provided a great deal of material. As the Collection works towards completion, the archives of many music publishers, and the British Library, are increasingly involved.
Apart from establishing the definitive archive of Thiman’s music, the Collection aims to support anyone involved in academic study of his music. A mature student at Bristol University, David Dewar, is including Thiman in his PhD research, and there are two expressions of academic interest from the USA, one of which may lead to a bio-bibliography of Thiman.
The Collection also aims to encourage and facilitate performances and recordings of Thiman's work, and to keep those interested in his music in touch with developments by means of newsletters.
Anyone with an interest in Thiman’s music, who would like to receive the Newsletters, or who can supply material for the collection should contact: firstname.lastname@example.org