Kappa Gamma Psi was founded on December 11th, 1913 at the New England Conservatory of Music to satisfy the desire for an organized student relationship with the institution and its faculty. After this fellowship was recognized as an asset to the institution, nationalization was planned. At that time, Kappa Gamma Psi was only for male students of music. With only men in the fraternity, the first world war gave a rocky start to its expansion. The formation of Gamma Chapter in 1923 at the Boston Conservatory of Music marked the beginning of stable expansion for the fraternity.
The fraternity steadily gained chapters until the start of United States involvement in World War II, when growth leveled off. Then, as the Vietnam War progressed, chapters of Kappa Gamma Psi became inactive. In 1968, Alpha Chapter, at the New England Conservatory, went inactive. By 1976, only one chapter remained active: Iota Chapter at Ithaca College. Iota Chapter is still active today and Kappa Gamma Psi has maintained its national board and its identity as a national fraternity.
In 1976, Iota Chapter began inviting female students to join. In the 1980s, having developed more diverse performance interests (a trend which began in the 1950s), the chapter officially changed the fraternity's designation from Musical Fraternity to Performing Arts Fraternity. Today, Kappa Gamma Psi is open to male and female performers of any major.
This collection consists of 3 boxes – approximately .35 lin ft. The first box contains 17 folders of paper records; the second box contains 9 folders of photographs and a guest book; the third box contains issues of the fraternity’s publication.
These records were created/maintained by the Alpha Chapter of Kappa Gamma Psi at NEC. After the Alpha Chapter dissolved, these records remained in storage at NEC and were transferred to the archives in 2004. The issues of Gray and Black were donated to NEC by faculty member John Moriarty in 2008.
Access to this collection is by appointment through the NEC Archivist. A few folders have access restrictions.
All copyrights to this collection belong to the New England Conservatory. Permission to publish materials from this collection is granted by the Director of Libraries. This collection should be cited as Records of Kappa Gamma Psi Collection, New England Conservatory of Music Archives, Boston, MA.