German Music Archive

The German Music Archive (in German: Deutsches Musikarchiv, DMA) in Leipzig, is the central collection of printed and recorded music and the music-bibliographic information centre for Germany. It is a Federal agency founded in 1970, tasked with collecting all music published in the country. Publishers of printed and recorded music in Germany are required by law (since 1973) to deliver two copies of every edition as legal deposits to the archive.[citation needed]

German Music Archive
Deutsches Musikarchiv der Deutschen Nationalbibliothek.jpg
Reading room of the German Music Archive
Size2 million
Access and use
Access requirementsGerman National Library card
Other information

The DMA constitutes a department of the German National Library, Leipzig (Deutsche Nationalbibliothek).[citation needed]


Former host building: The Siemens-Villa in Berlin-Lankwitz

The archive was founded in West Berlin on January 1, 1970, during the division of Germany as a department of Frankfurt am Main based Deutsche Bibliothek—the national library for West Germany. It incorporated its precursor, the Deutsche Musik-Phonothek (1961–1969), and was located (until 2010) at the Siemens-Villa in Berlin-Lankwitz.[citation needed]

In the process of German reunification the West German Deutsche Bibliothek and the East German Deutsche Bücherei formed one national library with two seats in Frankfurt and Leipzig. The DMA moved to Leipzig in 2010, to be housed in an extension of the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek. Construction work began in 2006 and was completed in 2009.[citation needed]

In July 2000, the DMA also assumed the role as repository for GEMA, Gesellschaft für musikalische Aufführungs- und mechanische Vervielfältigungsrechte, a German music copyright organization. Since then, music publishers only have to submit copies to DMA, which covers both national archiving and copyright registration. The 210,000 works of printed music previously held by GEMA were transferred to DMA.[citation needed]


Former host building: The Siemens-Villa in Berlin-Lankwitz

Access to the archive is allowed to anyone with a German National Library card.

The library spaces, designed by Gabriele Glöckler[1] include listening booths and exhibition space[2] with temperature control and firedoors.[3]

Users can copy recordings from the archive, such as out of print recordings on various formats, onto CDs.[2]

The music archive also offers music bibliographic services. A common authority file is created with personal names, corporate bodies and work titles of the music, which can be made available for research purposes and as a cataloging tool. Until 2012, the DMA controlled uniform subject title files for its own use, which would then be merged into the common authority file. In addition, the German Music Archive has set up a database of loaned musical materials, the Bonn Catalog, which continuously updates the German National Library.

The archive contributes to the Europeana Sounds project, donating over 500 works.[4]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "German National Library". Retrieved 2022-04-09.
  2. ^ a b "Hier spielt die Musik". (in German). 2021-12-10. Retrieved 2022-04-09.
  3. ^ Lushington, Nolan; Rudorf, Wolfgang; Wong, Liliane (2016-04-25). Libraries: A Design Manual. Birkhäuser. p. 143. ISBN 978-3-03821-630-8.
  4. ^ "German National Library - Annual Report 2015" (PDF).

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 51°19′20.5″N 12°23′48.1″E / 51.322361°N 12.396694°E / 51.322361; 12.396694