Fonds F0058 - Howard Cable fonds.

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Howard Cable fonds.


  • 1937-2006 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

7.13 m of textual records and other material.

178 photographs
12 audio disks
161 audio reels
3 audio cassettes
3 map folders.

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Howard Reid Cable was a Canadian conductor, arranger, composer, music director, scriptwriter, and producer. He was born in Toronto, Ontario on December 15, 1920. Cable studied piano, clarinet, and the oboe and played in the Parkdale Collegiate Institute Orchestra under Leslie Bell. He also studied at the Toronto Conservatory of Music.

Cable began his radio career in 1936 for CFRB Toronto as a programmer and scriptwriter. He began working for the CBC in 1941 as a composer of incidental music. He also produced and directed events at the Canadian National Exhibition. In 1967 he became the on-site producer for Expo ’67 in Montreal. Cable began working with the Canadian Brass as an arranger in 1977, during his association with the ensemble, wrote more than 80 compositions and arrangements. In 1986, he began to guest conduct leading Canadian orchestras in concerts featuring his own arrangements. The following year he became the music director of the Halifax Summer Pops Orchestra. Over the years, Cable composed, arranged and conducted for many musical groups including the Hannaford Street Silver Band.

Cable worked in musical theatre and other musical endeavors. From 1964-1967, he worked in New York as a studio conductor and on Broadway. His Canadian theatrical credits include associations with the National Ballet, as well as the Banff, Shaw and Charlottetown festivals. Cable was music director of the Summer Musical Theatre training program (1975-1983) and program head (1983-1985) at the Banff Centre. He was also the head of the music department at Humber College, Toronto (1982-1985) and music director of the Royal York Hotel, Toronto (1974-1986). In 1989, Cable began a summer training program in musical theatre techniques and production at Dalhousie. He composed numerous scores for CBC radio and television, the National Film Board, Calgary International Organ festival and the 1988 Olympic Winter Games arts festival and gala in Calgary.

In 1980, Cable received the Canadian Band Directors’ Association Award for his contribution to the development of Canadian band music. He received an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from University of Lethbridge in 2002, and was appointed a member of the Order of Canada by the Governor General in 1999. Cable died in 2016.

Archival history

MsC 302 donated by Howard Cable in 1985. MsC 300 donated by Joyce Sullivan Scott in 2003. Acc 896/12.13 donated by Howard Cable in 2009.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Fonds consists of variety of materials spanning majority of Howard Cable's professional life including: correspondence; financial materials such as budgets, payroll sheets, and account statements; royalty statements and contracts (some with riders); manuscript sketches and scores as well as published scores of works composed, co-authored, or arranged by Howard Cable including those based on Canadian folk music and those used in large-scale productions such as Canadian National Exhibition Grandstand shows and General Motors automobile shows; scripts and playlists for Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio and television programmes as well as theatrical productions; programmes, promotional material and newsclippings related to productions or performances in which Howard Cable participated; administrative materials (e.g., meeting minutes, proposals, etc.) concerning professional associations or committees with which Howard Cable was involved; academic programmes and other materials related to courses or clinics taught by Howard Cable; some graphical materials such as technical drawings concerning stage schematics for Sea to Sea, Expo 67 and Canada Day shows in particular; photographs primarily relating to major productions with which Howard Cable was involved such as CNE Grandstand show Sea to Sea; and sound recordings of works that Howard Cable either composed or produced. MsC 300 consists of five orchestral parts/arrangements of popular songs by Howard Cable.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Records arranged in the following series:

  • Production records
  • Teaching records
  • Professional committees and associations records
  • Reference materials
  • Photographic records
  • Sound recordings
  • Subject files.

Within each series, records are further arranged in thematic groupings (if applicable) and then in ascending chronological order.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Some items restricted.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes

Majority of text is in English but some text is in French, Spanish, Japanese or German.

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

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Notes area


Title based on the contents of the fonds.


Further accruals expected.

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Description control area

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Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion




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