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The Birth of the Broadway Musical: A New American Art

Thomas Shoebotham

Presented at: OCON 2019

Date: Jun 22, 2019

Light opera had existed for generations as popular entertainment. After World War I, however, American composers brought new idioms such as ragtime and jazz to theaters, replacing European conventions with an American musical style more suited to 20th-century society, less hidebound by past tradition. This class examines two of the earliest landmarks of this new style, Showboat (1927) and Oklahoma (1943), in particular the way in which they each integrated all the aspects of musical theater in new ways.


Parts: 2

Handout: none


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