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F409 Spring 2019 Putting It Together: The Life and Works of Stephen Sondheim

Course number : F409 Spring 2019   
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F409 Spring 2019 Putting It Together: The Life and Works of Stephen Sondheim
Wednesdays, 11:50–1:15, Mar. 27–Apr. 17
Four sessions
Coordinator: Norma Jean Reck

We will explore composer/lyricist Stephen Sondheim's life and career from his beginnings growing up on the upper west side of Manhattan to achieving international recognition as one of the premier composers of our time. His long career spanned more than half a century, during which time he revolutionized the art form of musical theatre. His complex, intricate music and intelligent lyrics have shown themselves to have the power to bring his characters to life in a way seldom seen on the Broadway stage. We will analyze the evolution of his music, lyrics, and themes and talk about his collaborations. This context will provide the understanding necessary to further appreciate Merrily We Roll Along, which Mason's School of Theater will perform in May. All OLLI members are welcome to attend a 3:00 pm matinee on Friday, May 3 at Mason.
Mason's Musical Director Joe Walsh and music student-Sondheim devotee Caleb Cassell will present the course sessions.
  • Mar. 27: Sondheim pre-1981, including Merrily We Roll Along, Sondheim's semi-autobiographical musing on friendship and the high price of success.
  • Apr. 3: Sondheim post-1981, including Sunday in the Park with George, Road Show, and current work on a musical based on the works of Luis Bunuel.
  • Apr. 10: A Sondheim Celebration. As Sondheim wrote in Merrily We Roll Along, “there's so much stuff to sing.”
  • Apr. 17: In-depth analysis and preparation for attending the performance of Merrily We Roll Along at Mason.
On May 3, Mason's School of Theater will perform Merrily We Roll Along at a 3 pm matinee. Details about purchasing tickets will be provided in class. 
Norma Jean Reck is a lifelong theater lover and coordinator of OLLI's Theater Lovers' Groups in Fairfax and Reston.

Class Details

4 Sessions
Weekly - Wed

Tallwood Campus

Norma Reck 

Class Fee: 


Schedule Information

Date(s) Class Days Times Location Instructor(s)
3/27/2019 - 4/17/2019 Weekly - Wed 11:50 AM - 1:15 PM Fairfax, Tallwood Campus  Map, Room: TA-1 Norma Reck 

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