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These pages are no longer updated.
Please use our new Research Guides at

Be sure to update any links or bookmarks to point to the new guides.

For subject assistance contact: Kirk Doran, Liaison Librarian, 254-8933. Librarian's website.


Reference Collection

When looking for encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauri, atlases, or other reference materials, limit your search in the Library Catalog to the location Reference Stacks, main level.

The library maps show where the reference books are located on the main level. Use each book's call number to identify its specific location on the reference shelves.

The following short list is just a sample of the library's print reference books related to theatre and dance:


Search the Library Catalog to view the Waidner-Spahr Library's collection of books, films, and other media. Books in the Main and Reference Stacks are shelved according to the Library of Congress Classification System. For additional location information, view the Library Maps.

Many books about theatre and dance can be found in these call number ranges:

Dance: GV1580-GV1799.4
Performing arts and show business: PN1560-PN1590
Dramatic representation and the theater: PN2000-PN3307

Browsing these call number ranges in the stacks is a useful starting point, and searching the Library Catalog will help you locate specific sources.

WorldCat is the most comprehensive resource for identifying books and other materials held by thousands of libraries worldwide (including Dickinson). In many cases, you may borrow items from other libraries using interlibrary loan.


The Journal Locator is a searchable list of all the journals (electronic and print) that Dickinson College owns or has access to. When you locate a journal title, be sure to read the details to make sure we own the specific volumes, issues or years you need. If we don't, you will need to use interlibrary loan (ILLiad).

  • To find journals dealing with theater and dance, select Music, Dance, Drama & Film from the dropdown menu.
  • Or, if you already have a citation or reference to a specific journal, just enter the journal title in the search box.


A complete list of Dickinson's databases can be found on the library's database page.

Select Theatre or Dance from the subject menu for a concise list of the databases most relevant to these topics.

The following are just a few examples of relevant databases:

  • Academic Search Complete - An index of scholarly journals, and popular and news magazine articles in all disciplines. Includes full text for many, but not all sources.
  • Berg Fashion Library - Offers access to resources in fashion and related fields. Includes the full-text of the Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion, and an extensive color image bank.
  • JSTOR - An interdisciplinary archive of more than 600 journals in the arts, humanities, and social sciences. All full text.
  • Literature Criticism Online - An extensive collection of literary commentary including modern and historical drama criticism and Shakespearean criticism.


In addition to searching for films in the Library Catalog, you can all browse our film collection by topic or language:

  • Theatre Films - A list of the library's documentary films related to theatre.
  • Dance Films - A list of the library's documentary films on dance.
  • Visit the Search Films Page for streaming videos and additional ways to search for films.

Web Sites

Web sites may be useful sources of information for your research project. However, it is important to use caution when using web sites. When evaluating an online resource, you should consider who wrote the content, what organization is hosting the web site, and what kind of expertise, authority, or bias these individuals or groups might bring to the materials you're using. It is also important to consider the relevance of the information to your research, and the currency of the information.

For more information on evaluating web resources for use in your coursework, consult a librarian or check with your professor.


  • Doollee - A database of playwrights and plays, focusing on those produced in English since 1956.
  • PBS - View PBS performing arts videos including opera, dance, and theater.
  • Tony Awards - Official website of the American Theater Wing.


  • Dance Insider - Founded in 1998 by professional dancers and journalists to tell stories not told elsewhere, give a voice to dancers, and build the dance audience.
  • NY Public Library's Jerome Robbins Dance Division - The Dance Collection catalog lists works about all forms of dance, from all cultures, in print and other media. It includes materials in many languages and serves as an index to an international range of dance periodicals. (Note: limit your search to the Performing Arts:Dance collection.)
  • PBS - View PBS performing arts videos including opera, dance, and theater.