Commonwealth Speakers:Key Moments in American Musical Theatre History


It has been said that aside from jazz, the American musical is the only true American art form. The musical came into its own through creators such as Jerome Kern, Rodgers and Hammerstein and Stephen Sondheim. But, how did it evolve? This presentation looks at landmark musicals to discuss changes in the genre's landscape. The exploration begins with the 1927 Show Boat, which many believe to be the first modern musical. From there we turn to Oklahoma! (which pioneered the integrated musical form) and West Side Story (which revolutionized dance as an element of storytelling). We also look at '70s musicals like Sondheim's Company and A Chorus Line. The presentation ends with Rent and Spring Awakening, two Tony winners that reinvigorated Broadway.

Equipment: Either a DVD player and TV OR LCD projector, screen, DVD player and PA speaker system.


Key to Presentations
F Family/Younger Audiences
H Hands-on/Active Participation
L Lectures
P Performances
Also See. . .