History of the library


The library's spacious rooms were used to create a reading room, two audio-visual studios and other listening rooms. This made it possible to use the layout of the library for such purposes as undisturbed studying of materials, listening to CDs and LPs and playing video tapes or, if need be, holding various seminars and other events as part of the regular faculty tuition.


The Liechtenstein Palace became the definite home of the Music Faculty from 1993. That year was an important turning point not only for the history of the AMU Music Faculty, but also for the HAMU faculty library. At that time, the previously separate library and phonothèque were joined to create the layout as we know it today.

The relocation to Liechtenstein Palace brought about some dramatic changes. For the first time, all the funds were consolidated in one place, allowing for swift and high-quality utilisation of all sources of information. The library was also newly equipped with the necessary furniture, players and compact shelves.

The library underwent another dramatic transformation within the context of automation, which was also commenced in 1993. In the following year, grant funds were used to acquire computer system equipment and a laser printer, an internet connection was set up via modem and switched telephone lines, and the basis for an electronic catalogue was created. All classic hard-copy catalogues are being systematically transferred. In 1997 the catalogue was also converted into electronic form via scanning, and is accessible in this form on-line to all users. In 1998 the library was the first at AMU to start the operation of the new Tinlib library system, including automated lending based on barcodes.


The AMU Music Faculty was already accepting students in 1946–1947 and the history of the original HAMU library dates back to the year 1950. The Music Faculty headquarters were located in the Rudolfinum. At first the fund of books and music and the phonothèque existed separately. At that time, the fund of music and books was closely connected with the archive of the State Conservatory, which was located in the same place. In 1967 the library moved from the Rudolfinum to Valentinská street. The phonothèque initially developed as part of the HAMU Sound Studio, not becoming independent until the 1960s. After the Rudolfinum was closed for restoration work in 1988, the phonothèque and the entire Faculty made their way to a building on Korunní street.


From the outset one must bring to mind the founding of the Academy of Performing Arts, which arose from the Prague Conservatory Master Class (the oldest conservatory in Central Europe, the Prague Conservatory was established in 1811). The master class was a superstructure following the completion of regular studies, lasting several years. The Academy of Performing Arts come into existence on 27 October 1945 upon the President of the Republic, Edvard Beneš, signing a decree on the establishment of a university.

The first academic year commenced in 1946–1947. The school had four disciplines: music, drama, dance and film. Over the course of time, most disciplines became the faculties that are now located in central Prague. The Music and Dance Faculty of the AMU is located in beautiful and historically valuable palaces – the Liechtenstein Palace and the Palais Hartig – in Prague's Malá Strana.