History in Music

Ever wondered about the historical events behind the story of "Fiddler on the Roof"? Or whether the hugely entertaining and fun musical "Singin’ the Rain" was an accurate depiction of the coming of the “talkies"? These classes will reveal the history behind these amazing fictional accounts.

History In Music

"Hi, I'm David - let me take you on a journey of discovery through history, using musicals as the backdrop to teach you about a whole range of historical topics. This history course is based on how musical writers have sometimes chosen some weird and apparently unpromising subjects for their shows but somehow produced hits! We’ll look at musicals drawing on international politics: Evita, Call Me Madam and Chess; horror stories used as inspiration for musicals, like Rocky Horror Show and Sweeney Todd; musicals based on fairy stories, some subverted to provide unexpected twists, as in Frozen and Into The Woods; and the controversial side of Rodgers and Hammerstein. Plus other quirky musicals, like the Producers, Hello Dolly!, and Paint Your Wagon, and musicals based around industrial strife. As usual I’ll focus on the history behind these shows, both the times in which they are set and the motives of the writers."


7 Nov 2022 Kathryn Grayson List 3 17 Oct 2022 Doris Day List 24 Oct 2022 Howard Keel List 5 September 2022 Ray Bolger List 12 September 2022 Doris Day List 1 & 8 August 2022 Judy Garland List 15 August 2022 Bing Crosby List 29 August 2022 Cyd Charisse List

Geek Notes

Music Listening

Benefits of listening to music include:

  • Improving wellbeing
  • Improving quality of life
  • Increasing positive emotion
  • Reduce symptoms of depression
  • Reducing symptoms of anxiety
  • Reducing stress
  • Improving cognition
  • Connecting with others.

Click to find out more about the evidence and points.

Lifelong Learning

Benefits of lifelong learning include:

  • Enhancing psychological wellbeing
  • Increasing autonomy and efficacy
  • Enhancing quality of life
  • Increasing social inclusion
  • Enhancing social cohesion
  • Increasing independence
  • Increasing emotional health
  • Improving sense of wellbeing 
  • Increasing coping skills
  • Improving cognition.
When is this class on?

The information and images in documents are provided for informational, educational and interest use only. The information has not been prepared for your specific requirements, and it is your responsibility to make sure it is appropriate for you. This information does not contain or constitute, and should not be interpreted as, medical or therapeutic advice. If you have any doubts about your health, you should consult your doctor before implementing anything you read about in the documents. You acknowledge and accept that you read the information and undertake any activities discussed therein at your own risk. The information should not be shared with third parties or used for any commercial purposes.

David Price
David Price BA, MA is a writer, editor and lecturer in History for adult education. David aims to make history interesting (not like it was in school!), using great paintings and musicals to highlight historical period, issues and events. David is the author of Cancan!, a history of the dance, he has written several magazine articles, and often edits books on art.
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