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Workforce Development & Continuing Education

Music, Theater, and Film Courses
Opera house with many balconies    Male opera singer
Lifelong Learning  Class Schedule How to Register

Lifelong Learning Music, Theater, and Film Courses

Lifelong Learning courses are designed primarily for students age 50 and over. Not all listed courses are offered each semester. See schedule of Lifelong Learning classes to find current schedules, location, dates, and costs.

Music: Food For Thought

All Those Years Ago: The Beatles as Musicians and Cultural Icons, LLI-827 - 6 Hours

Using the backdrop of post-World War II, economic growth, the expanded availability of radio and television, the “invention of the teenager, letters, films, recordings, books, articles, internet resources, first person accounts, in-class piano demonstrations, and humor you will learn how John, Paul, George, Ringo, the port of Liverpool (as some say Liverpool was the 5th Beatle), their manager Brian Epstein, and their producer George Martin all brought their individual musical influences, childhood experiences, recording technology, psycho-social attributes, and family dynamics together into a gigantic stew that became—and continues to sustain—the influence of the Beatles on music and cultural world-wide. The class will be dynamic and interactive. Tuition waiver applies; seniors pay fee only.

Great Tenors: Enrico Caruso and Mario Lanza, LLI-829 - 8 Hours

This class will examine the personal and professional lives of two great Operatic Tenors: Enrico Caruso and Mario Lanza. In addition, we will explore the historical and musical significance of their works through a presentation of their honors, repertoire, recordings, media, references, readings, and film. A discussion on the art of singing opera, vocal technique, and vocal training required of opera singers will also be covered. Tuition waiver applies; seniors pay fee only.

Opera Divas, LLI-685 – Hours: 8

In lectures and on DVDs you will see and hear Opera Divas, famous/familiar female opera singers. They will be featured in a variety of operatic roles, in various operas and in opera houses throughout the world. The opera presentations will feature such Opera Divas as Renee Fleming, Maria Callas, Joan Sutherland, and others. The operas will include La Traviata, Rigoletto, Aida, and more. Before presenting an Opera Diva singing an aria on a DVD, the teacher will discuss characteristics of the singing voice, vocal technique, the roles performed by the singer, and a synopsis of the opera/scene. Tuition waiver applies; seniors pay fee only.

Piano Conversations: Beethoven, LLI-721 – Hours: 6

Beethoven’s 32 piano sonatas represent not only some of the most celebrated music ever written, but also a revolutionary process that transformed the musical language of the time between the classical and romantic periods. This course will discuss his piano works and stylistic evolution in the context of his symbolic life story and struggle with deafness. It will cover Beethoven; piano sonatas from his early period Through the middle (“heroic”) period to his late, contemplative style, and explain their tremendous impact on piano music as we know it today. Join a concert pianist for a live piano performance, CD recordings and a fascinating discussion. Tuition waiver applies; seniors pay fee only.

Piano Conversations: Four Giants of Romantic Music, LLI-662 – Hours: 6

This class will engage you in the world of music—live piano performances, listening to recordings, and fascinating discussion on the lives and works of four composer geniuses of the Romantic Period. These four extraordinary composers were born between the years 1809-1811. This course takes a unique look not only at their works, but also at the fascinating way in which their paths intertwined, both socially and artistically. Composing, conducting, performing, writing and editing-all four created some of the greatest music in our concert halls today. Week 1: Felix Mendelssohn: The Perfect Prodigy; Week 2: Robert Schumann: Music and Madness; Week 3: Fryderyk Chopin: A Fragile Revolutionary; Week 4: Franz Liszt: Rock Star of the 19th Century. Tuition waiver applies; seniors pay fee only.

Piano Conversations: Fryderyk Chopin, LLI-051 – Hours: 1.5

Join a concert pianist for a live piano performance and fascinating discussion on the life and music of Fryderyk Chopin. Listen to selected pieces from waltz, mazurkas, and nocturnes, some performed by a pianist, others of outstanding recordings. Gain insight into the music of a composer of whom Robert Schumann said, “Hats off, gentlemen! A genius!

The Art of Listening: A Fresh Look at Music You Love, LLI-716 – Hours: 8

Did you ever wish you understood great symphonies, Broadway musicals or classic jazz at a deeper level? This course, led by a conductor, will help you to sharpen your critical listening skills, to learn what to listen for, and thereby to enhance your enjoyment of the music you love. Each class session will focus on a different musical genre: Great Symphonies, Choral Masterpieces, Broadway Musicals, and Classic Jazz. Join the class for insightful explanations, timeless mu- sic and engaging discussion. Tuition waiver applies; seniors pay fee only.

The Rat Pack, LLI-823 1 Hour

Frank, Dean, Sammy, Joey, Peter, and Liza…Liza? Yes, Liza: there is more to the Rat Pack scene than you know. It all began in Las Vegas’ Sands hotel and casino during the filming of Ocean’s 11, and morphed into an American legend that has currency to the present day. This class will examine the ins and outs, disagreements, music, life, and hijinks (both on and off-stage) of this group of madcap performers at the close of the post-WWII era. You will view video clips, listen to recordings, and hear the instructor perform.

“West Side Story”: The Making of an American Icon, LLI715 – Hours: 5

Join us in celebrating Bernstein’s landmark work as we explore the music, choreography, and the creative process of West Side Story, an American Broadway classic. By all accounts, Bernstein and his collaborators were apparently quite pleased with the results after years of an on-again off-again journey to the stage. Along the way there were many changes of this retelling of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Ultimately, West Side Story is a hard, uncompromising look at gang warfare and racial tension in the 1950s, with the Jets and the Sharks replacing the Montagues and Capulets as they duke it out over turf rights in Hell’s Kitchen. This class will feature opportunities for participants to sing some of the familiar tunes from Bernstein’s score. Tuition waiver applies; seniors pay fee only.


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