The Yves Becko Collection provides a fundamental source for understanding the development of opera in Belgium. Yves Becko (1943-2004) wanted to embrace opera as widely as possible and he assembled all kinds of material, which he compared and studied in depth. The collection contains an impressive number of documents and recordings, some of which are extremely rare.
This is the richest collection of opera records ever assembled for the pre-1950 period and the historic collection of recordings is unique in Belgium. It comprises some 20,000 (78 rpm) records as well as 64 cylinders from the period 1890 à 1950, which perpetuate the voices of mainly Belgian singers.
This record collection is completed by a library of almost 2000 works devoted to the history of sound recording and vocal interpretation, recording techniques and the development of the opera repertoire.
The collection has been entrusted to the music section of the Bibliothèque Royale de Belgique, which houses the only heritage sound archives in Belgium. It perfectly completes previous collections among which there were previously very few documents relating to the period between 1890 and 1950.