Music History


Exploring Chopin

In this class, we will explore the life and music of Frederic Chopin, and discuss how pivotal life events shaped the composer’s artistic viewpoint and contributed to the creation of masterpieces which are cherished by the audiences across the globe. We will try to find an answer to what makes his music unique, appealing and …

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Beyond Category: Duke Ellington

Beyond Category: Duke Ellington explores the music and life of one of jazz’s most important artists, pianist/composer Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington. We will investigate the history of jazz using Ellington’s unique musical vision as a guide. Topics central to this course will be Ellington’s creativity as a composer, his role as a leading bandleader in …

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Black Music Discovery

This course examines the lives and music of historical Black composers in classical music. We will discuss larger social topics in order to draw parallels of the historical and social trends of Blackness in America. Topics to include: Black Nationalism, Identity, Black Womanhood, Protest Music, and BLM. Each week, a specific composer and social topic …

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Treesa Ruins Classical Music

Buckle in and hold on tight for this continued wild ride through the bizarre, entertaining, and brilliant world of music history. From the Dark Ages to Hollywood, this class will explore how music shaped the world and how the world shaped music. Crazy anecdotes and unbelievably genius musical excerpts will have you completely immersed in …

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Jazz History Since 1959

Join Brian Jones for Jazz History Since 1959, a course exploring what scholar John F. Szwed called the “multiple revolutions” that shook up the world of jazz at the dawn of the 1960s. We will dissect the rise of free jazz, jazz and the counterculture, the birth of fusion, world jazz, and the cultural politics …

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Masterworks Companion

Join Richmond Symphony Concertmaster Daisuke Yamamoto and Director of Education & Community Engagement Walter Bitner for this deep dive into the music of our 2021-22 Masterworks Concert Season. Each class in this unique companion course will focus on the repertoire of the Symphony’s next Masterworks concert performances and feature a special guest with a critical …

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Listening to Jazz

Join Brian Jones and special guests for an illuminating conversation on jazz. For each class, Jones has asked a colleague in the music industry to choose six jazz recordings that they have found particularly meaningful. During the class, we will listen to the tracks, deconstruct the merits of the tunes, identify the unique characteristics of …

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