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Tony Costa Sheet Music and Music Scores (MS-00545)

Abstract

The Tony Costa Sheet Music and Music Scores (1936-1995) consists of printed sheet music and hand-written scores composed by entertainer, songwriter, and Las Vegas, Nevada orchestra conductor Tony Costa.

Finding Aid - PDF
Date
1936-1995
Extent
0.63 Linear Feet (2 boxes)
Resource Type
Collection
Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Materials in this collection may be protected by copyrights and other rights. See Reproductions and Use on the UNLV Special Collections website for more information about reproductions and permissions to publish.

Collection Type
Scope and Contents

The Tony Costa Sheet Music and Music Scores (1936-1995) consists of printed sheet music and hand-written musical scores composed by entertainer, songwriter, and Las Vegas, Nevada orchestra conductor Tony Costa.

Biographical / Historical Note

Entertainer and song writer Anthony (Tony) Costa was born March 25, 1920 in Manhattan, New York. He started taking piano lessons at age eight and attended the famed Julliard School of Music. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees in music at the Manhattan School of Music. By the time World War II began, Costa was a concert pianist. He joined the Air Force and served in the medical corps in Africa.

Costa first came to Las Vegas, Nevada in 1955 to perform with a trio at the Dunes Hotel. He returned to California in 1956 and in 1963, while playing piano in a Covina restaurant, he teamed up with singer Jeanne Shelden. They toured together as Costa and Shelden, eventually playing the Skyroom at the Desert Inn Hotel. They were married in 1965 and moved to Las Vegas that year. He later led the orchestra at the original MGM Grand Hotel and Casino, which became Bally's Hotel and Casino. There he was conductor for Hallelujah Hollywood andJubilee before recorded music replaced the orchestra in the early 1980s. In addition to the 17 years at MGM and Bally's, Costa was also vocalist director for A Chorus Line at the Sahara Hotel and conductor for the Las Vegas productions of Oklahoma,South Pacific,Funny Girl,Sound of Music, and other shows.

Costa founded the Symphonic Association of Las Vegas and became the first conductor of the Las Vegas Philharmonic Orchestra. The 72-piece symphony performed several concerts at University of Nevada, Las Vegas's Artemus Ham Hall from 1977 to 1979. Costa was involved with other projects at UNLV, conducting for such shows as Under the Gaslight and Nine.

Costa was a member of the Las Vegas Musicians Union Local 369 and the National Association of Teachers of Singing. He also served on the advisory board of the Spring Mountain Summer Theatre. Costa retired in 1989.

Anthony "Tony" Costa passed away in April, 1998.

Source: Las Vegas Sun, April 7, 1998 http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/1998/apr/07/tony-costa-las-Vegas-music-conductor-dies/

Arrangement

Music manuscripts are arranged in alphabetical order.

Preferred Citation

Tony Costa Sheet Music and Music Scores, 1936-1995. MS-00545. Special Collections, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

EAD ID
US::NvLN::MS00545
Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Jeanne Costa in 2008; accession number 2008-022. Materials were collected by the director of the Arnold Shaw Popular Music Research Center and transferred to Special Collections.

Processing Information

Material was processed by Joyce Moore in 2010. In 2014, as part of a legacy finding aid conversion project, Dallas Reiber and Joyce Moore revised and enhanced the collection description to bring it into compliance with current professional standards and Dallas Reiber entered the data into ArchivesSpace.

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