Howard Goding

Howard Goding was born in Dedham, MA in 1893. Encouraged by his mother who was an amateur musician, Goding entered the New England Conservatory in 1910, where he studied organ with Wallace Goodrich and piano with George Proctor. Goding graduated with a degree in organ in 1913 and another in piano from NEC in 1915 and was the winner of the Mason and Hamlin piano competition. In December 1917, Goding made his debut as soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra in Sanders Theatre. As a soloist, Goding performed with the BSO under Koussevitzsky and Munch. He also toured as a concert pianist throughout the United States. In 1920, Goding returned to NEC, becoming a faculty member in the piano department. He continued teaching at the Conservatory for half a century until 1970, and held the title of Professor Emeritus from 1971-1981. During those 50 years, Goding was chair of the piano department for thirty-five of them. New England Conservatory awarded Goding an honorary doctorate in 1972 and was named the Conservatory’s Outstanding Alumnus in 1979. Goding lived much of his life in Duxbury, MA, having moved there in 1952. He died in a nursing home in Plymouth, MA on August 1, 1981.

Physical description

The Goding collection consists of one drop front box containing several paper files, one notebook, one ledger, one catalog, 2 compact discs and several photographs.


The original part of this collection was bequeathed to NEC by Howard Goding through his estate in January 1982, along with a collection of published scores.  In 2016, Goding's great nephew, Jeff Goding '65, '74, donated other items including several envelopes of newspaper clippings, many concert programs, a bit of correspondence, an NEC academic catalog, and 2 CDs.


Appointments to view this collection must be made in advance with the NEC Archivist. There are no restrictions pertaining to this collection


All copyrights to this collection belong to the New England Conservatory. Permission to publish is through the Director of Libraries. This collection should be cited as the Howard Goding Collection, New England Conservatory Archives. Boston, MA.

Scope & Content

The Howard Goding collection is comprised of six series:

  1. Notebook, Ledger, Catalog
  2. Correspondence
  3. Concert programs
  4. Publicity materials
  5. Clippings
  6. Photographs  
  7. Recordings   

The entire collection spans the years 1910?-1979. Goding's Harmony notebook contains harmonic exercises that he probably composed as a student, probably in 1910 or 1911. The ledger contains a listing of Goding's students from the academic year 1943-1944. The NEC catalog is from the year 1929-1930. The first folder of correspondence contains two greeting cards and a few empty envelopes; the second contains two letters to Goding from a Japanese woman whose daughter had studied with him. The two folders of programs span from 1915-1930 and 1932-1979 respectively and include two from the BSO, one from the Boston Pops, several from Jordan Hall, a few from the University of Idaho, several from other Massachusetts venues, as well as a few programs of the Goding-Thiede-Zeidl trio. Goding's publicity materials include press brochures/flyers and a poster. The fifth series contains several folders of newspaper clippings about Goding’s performances, primarily from the 1930s (which have been photocopied for preservation purposes). Each envelope of clippings is given its own folder. The sixth series includes several photographs including two large portraits of Goding, two copies of the same photo of a group of people (faculty?) including Goding, a picture of Goding with two other men, as well as autographed photos of Goding's teacher, George Proctor and Paul Shirley. The two compact discs are part 1 and 2 of Goding’s 50th anniversary piano recital from 1969.


Container list

Folder 1 – Notebook, Ledger, NEC Catalog

Folder 2 – Correspondence (1)

Folder 3 - Correspondence (2)

Folder 4 – Programs (1), 1915-1930

Folder 5 - Programs (2), 1932-1979 + undated

Folder 6 - Publicity materials

Folders 7-16 - Clippings

Folder 17 - Photographs

Compact discs (2)