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Celebrating the Theatrical Dramas of Stephen Sondheim -- John Frey
Odd Fellows Hall
San Luis Obispo, CA
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Celebrating the Theatrical Dramas of Stephen Sondheim -- John Frey
Thursdays, September 7, 14, 21, 28, October 5 1:00pm - 4:00pm

Oddfellows Hall,  SLO

Five Sessions

Registering for this course by buying a ticket will admit you to 5 sessions of this course.

$25 for LLCC members, $50 for non-members.

Stephen Sondheim (born March 22, 1930) is an American composer and lyricist for stage and film - a true genius of the musical theater. He is the winner of an Academy Award, eight Tony Awards including the Special Award for Lifetime Achievement, multiple Grammy Awards, and a Pulitzer Prize. You will view a bio and a celebration of his most popular songs as well as four of his most famous shows which include Company, Into the Woods, Sunday in the Park with George, and Passion.

        Six by Sondheim is a documentary which pays tribute to composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim. The film centers on the stories of six great Sondheim songs and reveals how art and life have been intertwined for Sondheim since his childhood.

        Sondheim - A Celebration at Carnegie Hall features 18 of his most famous songs in a performance at Carnegie Hall performed by an all-star cast including Liza Minnelli.

        Company is a musical comedy which revolves around the 35th birthday of Bobby (a single man unable to commit fully to a steady relationship), five  couples and his three girlfriends. Company deals with themes related to marriage and courtship. It features the song Being Alive.

        Into the Woods intertwines the plots of several Brothers Grimm fairy tales and follows them further to explore the consequences of the characters' wishes and quests. The main characters are taken from the stories of Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk, Rapunzel, and Cinderella.

        Sunday in the Park with George is a musical was inspired by the painting "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte" by Georges Seurat. This story revolves around the artist  as he is immersed in painting his masterpiece and imagining the people in the painting coming to life.

        Passion is a musical adapted from Iginio Ugo Tarchetti's novel Fosca. The story revolves around a handsome soldier, Giorgio, who is shattered by the unconditional and obsessive love of Fosca, a homely, chronically ill, bedridden woman. Simultaneously Giorgio corresponds with his beautiful (but married) mistress Clara through letters.

Each session will consist of a 30-minute commentary and discussion followed by a 2.5-hr video for each of the musicals. The 42-page course syllabus includes (1) an analysis of the plot of each of the works, (2) a synopsis and list of characters, (3) a description of the source material that inspired the work and (4) brief biographies of the composer and performers. A list of recommended CDs, DVDs and books will be provided. The course will lead you with to an understanding of the scope and significance of the musicals of Stephen Sondheim.

John Frey is a retired Chemistry professor and a member of the boards of LLCC, Festival Mozaic and of Opera Lovers Meet.  He has performed in the chorus of Opera San Luis Obispo and the SLO Master Chorale.  He has had a lifelong love and passion for opera, choral music and musical theater.  He has made numerous commentaries and video presentations for SLOs Opera Lovers, OperaSLO and LLCC.

If you would like to have the password for the member price for this course, go to www.lifelearnerscc.org for information on how you can become a member.


Odd Fellows Hall (View)
520 Dana Street
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
United States


Education > Classes

Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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