Cultural Influences on American Popular Music: Tin Pan Alley, Pr

OSH 590 / Non Credit
Course taught in: English

Course Description:

In this class, we will explore the contribution of Jews as songwriters, producers, performers and record label owners since the 19th century, and the fascinating connection between two minorities, the Jews and the African Americans.  Their contributions shaped the music, the entertainment industry and American popular culture.

Week 1 Introduction and beginnings, African American music, Jews Immigration, 19th Century musical panorama, Minstrelsy, Yiddish Theater, Early 20th Century Entertainment.

Week 2 Tin Pan Alley; Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Kurt Weil, Protest Song, Strange Fruit, Milt Gabler, Chicago Blues.

Week 3 Broadway Musicals part 1 - The Zigfeld Follies, George White Scandals, George M Cohan, Bert Williams, Fanny Brice, Marilyn Miller; Shubert Theaters, The Roaring Twenties, George and Ira Gershwin, Jews and African American Music, Eddie Cantor, W C Fields, Al Jolson.

Week 4 Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake, Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, Jerome Kern, Showboat; The 30s and 40s, Walter Winchell, Rodgers and Hart, Harold Arlen, Yip Harbourg, Ethel Merman, Ethel Waters, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Frank Loesser, Loewe and Lerner, Comden and Green.

Week 5 Jerome Robbins, West Side Story, Leonard Bernstein; Fiddler on the Roof; Funny Girl; Stephen Sondheim; Hal Prince.

Week 6 Jule Stein, David Merrick, Joseph Papp, Jerry Herman, Kander & Ebb, Bob Fosse and other choreographers, The European invasion, Disney and Famous Musicals.


Instructor:  Mr. Emanuel Abramovits


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This course is available as part of the following:

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Courses
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic all OLLI at UM fall courses will be taught remotely, via Zoom.

OLLI 2020-2021 Membership is required to take this course and will be added to your cart upon enrollment. If you already have purchased a membership, you will not be charged for this membership.
OLLI 2020-2021 Membership Added to cart upon enrollment.
Starts: 8/1/2020 Ends: 7/31/2021