Ben-Amots Archive established by National Library of Israel

The most recent batch of materials being prepared for the Ben-Amots Archive in the National Library of Israel.
Photo courtesy of Yehuda Romem


ofer-ben-amots-b-w-14.jpgOfer Ben-Amots, Colorado College Music Department co-chair and professor of theory and composition, was recently honored by the National Library of Israel with an archive dedicated to his life and works.

The foundation for the Ben-Amots Archive was laid during his most recent trip to Israel in November 2022, when he submitted a few of his newly-published piano scores to the National Library in Jerusalem to be considered for inclusion. Soon after, he was contacted by Dr. Gila Flam, a musicologist and director of the Music Department at the National Library, who invited Ben-Amots to send many more materials that would create his archive.

Flam requested all musical compositions (hand-written, typed, and published), audio and video recordings, articles, reviews, publications, concert programs, personal and professional correspondence, photos, and any other related items that Ben-Amots had saved throughout the years.

"As humbling as this invitation was, I was especially delighted since I have kept in my possession an enormous amount of materials, collected over more than 40 years," Ben-Amots said.

So far, Ben-Amots has shipped eight 30-pound boxes to the National Library of Israel, with a few more ready for delivery. His work will be among the millions of items in the library, which is dedicated to collecting and preserving the cultural treasures of Israel and of the Jewish people.

"While my collection is just a 'drop in the bucket,' it is nonetheless a tremendous recognition and reassurance of my work as a composer," he said.

After a special process of archival sanitization, the scores and manuscripts land on the desk of cataloger and archivist Yehuda Romem for further sorting and cataloging of the material. In addition to preservation of the original materials, most of it will be available digitally online for interested students, researchers, or the public at large.

Also instrumental in creating the Ben-Amots Archive was musicologist Rakefet Bar Sadeh, who has been a regular visitor to the CC Music Department since 2015. As an expert on Jewish and Israeli music, Dr. Bar Sade has written several articles on Ben-Amots’s music and is currently working on a book analyzing his opus.

Ben-Amots was born in Haifa, Israel. He studied composition at Tel Aviv University and at the Conservatoire de Musique in Geneva, Switzerland, before continuing to pursue studies in composition, music theory, and piano at the Hochschule für Musik in Detmold, Germany. He arrived in the U.S. in 1987 to study with George Crumb at the University of Pennsylvania, where he received his Ph.D. in music composition. His compositions have been recognized, performed, recorded, and published across the globe.

Report an issue - Last updated: 04/11/2023