Exploring opera 1

Course Dates: 26/09/22 - 28/11/22
Time: 13:15 - 15:15
Location: Keeley Street
Tutors: 
Join us to explore the history of opera over three enjoyable terms. In this first term we’ll explore the ideas that fuelled origins of opera and the wonderful world of Baroque opera seria. NB: this course has no break week due to the September bank holiday.
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Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £142.00

This course has now started

Course Code: MD997

Started Mon, day, 26 Sep - 28 Nov '22

Duration: 10 sessions (over 10 weeks)

Or call to enrol:020 7831 7831

Lines open Monday-Friday 12:00-18:00

Any questions? music@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 7492 2630

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

This course follows the textbook: The Oxford Illustrated History of Opera (Roger Parker) OUP 1994 which we encourage you to read alongside this course. In this first of the three courses we focus on Baroque music.

What will we cover?

- The origins of opera: Bardi’s Camerata and Monteverdi’s early style
- Recitative and aria, the building blocks of opera
- The importance of the Orpheus legend
- French 5-act operas
- Purcell and opera/semi opera in English
- Handel’s London opera seria
- The Beggar’s Opera
- Operatic reform of Metastasio, Gluck and early Mozart.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Discuss individual operas and their social and political context
- Understand the circumstances of each opera’s composition and first performance
- Discuss the place of these operas in the context of their composers’ lives and work.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

Some previous knowledge of opera is useful but not essential. No technical musical knowledge is assumed but you should have an interest in music and be keen to find out more. You will need to follow written and verbal instructions in English, engage in class discussions and take notes in English.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

You will be taught using a range of techniques including short lectures, slide shows and discussions, practical demonstrations on the piano and guided listening and watching sessions. Courses use a variety of materials including YouTube clips. Links to these are provided so that further exploration may take place between classes if you wish. Occasional short preparation tasks, such as listening to an aria or reading about a composer, librettist or style, may be set from time to time. Listening and reading outside class is encouraged and, once enrolled, further online resources will be available via Google Classroom.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Please bring a notebook and pen.
You may wish to buy some of the music or books recommended in class.
If you would like to read a textbook alongside this course we recommend’; The Oxford Illustrated History of Opera by Roger Parker (Oxford University Press 1994). This, however, is not essential for your enjoyment of the course.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

In January Pauline will teach MD998 Exploring opera 2

To find out more about music history classes Music history courses in London and online which lists our full programme of classes ordered by term, and by day of the week. You may then click on each title to read the full course outline.

Pauline Greene

Pauline Greene studied composition at Nottingham University and then composed, performed and was Musical Director with various theatre companies. She taught flute and composition, performing her music across the UK at various venues, including the Southbank Centre and the Edinburgh Festival, with her group The Concert Party, which she managed and directed. She has taught at the Universities of Middlesex and Hertfordshire, and ran the Music Access course at Morley College. She has taught at Birkbeck since 1984, moving from Music to Arts Management, and also lectures at Goldsmiths. She has given talks at the Royal Opera House, Wigmore Hall and Glyndebourne. At City Lit Pauline teaches a wide range of music history courses, with specialisms in opera, music for dance, theatre and film, musical analysis, and music since 1900. She is still involved in the organisation of small-scale charity concerts and one-off musical events, and she sings and plays with several small groups.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.