While music and dance in theatre is found all the way back to the Ancient Greeks, the musical theatre comedy that we know of today is truly an American form. This class not only allowed us to examine the elements of musical theatre, but to find connections to William Shakespeare's lyrical style, and today's hip hop music. The class ended with an examination of the ground breaking musical production, Hamilton.
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In class we studied the many classification of musicals including, but not limited to: Modern, Classical, Revue, Jukebox, Sung Thru, Rock Opera, Chamber, Book and Concept. Describe a musical which you have attended or participated as part of the company. What classification does it fall under? Why?
As discussed in class, the musicality of Shakespeare's text, heightened storylines, and physical comedy reflects elements found in musical theatre. Choose a work of William Shakepseare's that you know well. Reimagine it as a jukebox musical using popular music to tell the story. Name three songs that would be contained in this musical and how they would forward the narrative of this tale.
Writing music for Disney's Moana, producing a film adaptation of his Pulitzer Prize nominated musical In the Heights, guest spots on TV from SNL to Sesame Street and everything in between, Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator and star of Hamilton, the Musical, is in high demand these days. His rise in popularity has allowed him the opportunity to use his celebrity status to discuss politics and shed light on important topics. Look up a political issue that Lin-Manuel Miranda has supported. How has he used his position to aid this issue?
Research more about Hamilton, the Musical HERE In what ways does this musical tell the story of America today?
Hamilton, the Musical also has used it's position as a phenomenon to make social and political statements. At the 2016 Tony Awards, one day after the shooting at Pulse, the Orlando Nightclub, the production chose to perform the number without the use of prop guns, as we saw in class and can be seen again HERE After the elections in November, Vice President Mike Pence attended a performance of Hamilton. See what transpired HERE How do you feel about the performers using this one time only opportunity to speak their opinions? Why?
As always in DEARTS, we tie different themes and forms of art together. What elements of musical theatre remind you of other artworks or art forms that we've discussed or encountered in class? What reoccurring themes did you notice?
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