The majority of programmes are from concerts, with a couple of items from “Drawing Room Entertainments” and mixed concerts of songs and “Recitation”. Purely musical concert programmes are from recitals and chamber music concerts, as well as a number of mixed genre concerts. There are a few programmes from various series of Thomas Dunhill chamber concerts, dating from 1913, 1915 and 1916. There are also a few programmes from all-British concerts, usually named the “All-British concerts, Isidore de Lara”. These date from 1916 to 1919.
The majority of the material post-1920 relates to Dorothy Silk and her concert series, usually entitled “Dorothy Silk concerts of Old Music”. These were concerts incorporating vocal works and instrumental works from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries or earlier. Bach, Schütz, Handel and Purcell made up the core of these concerts, with Bach in particular contributing a high proportion of the programmes. However, other composers featured in the programmes, including works by Dowland. Though Dorothy Silk sung at all of the concerts, she did not feature in all the items within the concert; other singers also appeared.
The programmes date from 1878 to 1924. There are ten programmes from concerts given pre-1900. The collection is most dense post-1920: there are just under half the number of programmes for the five years between 1920 and 1924 as for the over 40 years between 1878 and 1919.
The programmes are arranged chronologically. Undated programmes are filed at the end of the dated sequence. This is followed by a concert-hall seating plan.