Music Theory through Musical Theatre: Putting It Together

Oxford University Press
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Music Theory through Musical Theatre takes a new and powerful approach to music theory. Written specifically for students in music theatre programs, it offers music theory by way of musical theatre. Not a traditional music theory text, Music Theory through Musical Theatre tackles the theoretical foundations of musical theatre and musical theatre literature with an emphasis on what students will need to master in preparation for a professional career as a performer. Veteran music theatre musician John Franceschina brings his years of experience to bear in a book that offers musical theatre educators an important tool in equipping students with what is perhaps the most important element of being a performer: the ability to understand the language of music in the larger dramatic context to which it contributes. The book uses examples exclusively from music theater repertoire, drawing from well-known and more obscure shows and songs. Musical sight reading is consistently at the forefront of the lessons, teaching students to internalize notated music quickly and accurately, a particularly necessary skill in a world where songs can be added between performances. Franceschina consistently links the concepts of music theory and vocal coaching, showing students how identifying the musical structure of and gestures within a piece leads to better use of their time with vocal coaches and ultimately enables better dramatic choices. Combining formal theory with practical exercises, Music Theory through Musical Theatre will be a lifelong resource for students in musical theatre courses, dog-eared and shelved beside other professional resource volumes.
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About the author

John Franceschina began composing and arranging music at the age of five and has written symphonies, chamber music, incidental music, and film scores. He has acted as musical director for productions in New York City and on national and international tours and the stage director of operas, musicals, and plays. As a pianist/arranger, he has accompanied Angela Lansbury, Elke Sommer, Nell Carter, Jan Peerce, Robert Merrill, Lotte Lenya, Paige O'Hara, Chita Rivera, and Gwen Verdon. An educator with thirty years of college teaching experience, he has written fifteen books about the theatre and musical theatre.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Oxford University Press
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Published on
Jul 1, 2015
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Pages
352
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ISBN
9780199999583
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Language
English
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Genres
Music / Genres & Styles / Musicals
Music / History & Criticism
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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John Franceschina
Armed with an eighth-grade education, an inexhaustible imagination, and an innate talent for dancing, Hermes Pan (1909-1990) was a boy from Tennessee who became the most prolific, popular, and memorable choreographer of the glory days of the Hollywood musical. While he may be most well-known for the Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers musicals which he choreographed at RKO film studios, he also created dances at Twentieth Century-Fox, M-G-M, Paramount, and later for television, winning both the Oscar and the Emmy for best choreography. In Hermes Pan: The Man Who Danced with Fred Astaire, Pan emerges as a man in full, an artist inseparable from his works. He was a choreographer deeply interested in his dancers' personalities, and his dances became his way of embracing and understanding the outside world. Though his time in a Trappist monastery proved to him that he was more suited to choreography than to life as a monk, Pan remained a deeply devout Roman Catholic throughout his creative life, a person firmly convinced of the powers of prayer. While he was rarely to be seen without several beautiful women at his side, it was no secret that Pan was homosexual and even had a life partner. As Pan worked at the nexus of the cinema industry's creative circles during the golden age of the film musical, this book traces not only Pan's personal life but also the history of the Hollywood musical itself. It is a study of Pan, who emerges here as a benevolent perfectionist, and equally of the stars, composers, and directors with whom he worked, from Astaire and Rogers to Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth, Elizabeth Taylor, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, Bob Fosse, George Gershwin, Samuel Goldwyn, and countless other luminaries of American popular entertainment. Author John Franceschina bases his telling of Pan's life on extensive first-hand research into Pan's unpublished correspondence and his own interviews. Pan enjoyed one of the most illustrious careers of any Hollywood dance director, and because his work also spanned across Broadway and television, this book will appeal to readers interested in musical theater history, dance history, and film.
Steven Levenson
Winner of the 2017 Tony Award for Best Musical

“Dear Evan Hansen lodges in your head long after you’ve seen it or heard it or read it. It feels like a pure expression from young writers at a crossroad of coming to terms with who they are and what they want to say about the world. Its honesty and truths haunt and ultimately open us up to ask the same question, no matter what our age or crossroad: What are the lies we tell ourselves?” –James Lapine (from the Foreword)

“A gorgeous new musical. Rarely—scratch that—never have I heard so many stifled sobs and sniffles in the theater. For those allergic to synthetic sentiment, rest assured that the show, with a haunting score by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, matched by a book of equal sensitivity by Steven Levenson, doesn’t sledgehammer home its affecting story. On the contrary, the musical finds endless nuances in the relationships among its characters, and makes room for some leavening humor too. The musical is ideal for families looking for something more complex than the usual sugary diversions. But then it should also appeal to just about anyone who has ever felt, at some point in life, that he or she was trapped “on the outside looking in,” as one lyric has it. Which is just about everybody with a beating heart.” –Charles Isherwood, New York Times

“Ravishingly bittersweet... A marvelous score by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, and an equally accomplished book by Steven Levenson...Dear Evan Hansen rolls onto some highly sensitive terrain—the writers are taking a serious look here at the ways in which we a s a culture exploit others’ misfortunes, a phenomenon abetted by the high-speed interventions of social media. The delight here is that Pasek, Paul, and Levenson do understand how to make this seemingly unmusical idea sing, and sing grandly.” –Peter Marks, Washington Post

“So fine in its craft and rich in its themes that, like the best works of any genre, it rewards being seen again—and again.” –Jesse Green, New York Magazine

“Terrific, gripping, and heartfelt. With a gorgeously melodic score by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, and a smart and soulful book by the playwright Steven Levenson, Dear Evan Hansen feels like a theatrical beachhead planted by (and, partly, for) millennials.” –Adam Green, Vogue

“Dear Evan Hansen is smartly crafted, emotionally open-hearted, and ideally cast. It has been embraced by millennials—yet its appeal is universal. Whatever your age, you’ll watch Dear Evan Hansen with the shock of recognition, and be touched by the honesty with which it portrays the smothering sensation of being an adolescent misfit, an awkward loser trapped in an indifferent world of self-assured winners.” –Terry Teachout, Wall Street Journal

A letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed could be his. Evan Hansen is about to get the one thing he’s always wanted: a chance to belong. Deeply personal and profoundly universal, Dear Evan Hansen is a groundbreaking American musical about truth, fiction, and the price we’re willing to pay for the possibility to connect.

*This publication includes the book and lyrics to the musical, as well as a foreword by James Lapine. Please note that it does not include the musical score.*

Steven Levenson is the book writer for Dear Evan Hansen. His plays include If I Forget, The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin, Core Values, The Language of Trees, and Seven Minutes in Heaven. A graduate of Brown University, he served for three seasons as a writer and producer on Showtime’s Master of Sex.

Benj Pasek & Justin Paul are the song-writing team behind Dear Evan Hansen. Previous musicals include A Christmas Story: The Musical, Dogfight, James and the Giant Peach, and Edges. Their film projects include La La Land (for which they won the Academy Award for Best Original Song for “City of Stars,” with composer Justin Hurwitz), Trolls, Snow White, and The Greatest Showman. Their television credits include The Flash, Smash, and Johnny and the Sprites. Both are graduates of the University of Michigan Musical Theatre Program and members of the Dramatists Guild of America, Inc.

John Franceschina
Armed with an eighth-grade education, an inexhaustible imagination, and an innate talent for dancing, Hermes Pan (1909-1990) was a boy from Tennessee who became the most prolific, popular, and memorable choreographer of the glory days of the Hollywood musical. While he may be most well-known for the Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers musicals which he choreographed at RKO film studios, he also created dances at Twentieth Century-Fox, M-G-M, Paramount, and later for television, winning both the Oscar and the Emmy for best choreography. In Hermes Pan: The Man Who Danced with Fred Astaire, Pan emerges as a man in full, an artist inseparable from his works. He was a choreographer deeply interested in his dancers' personalities, and his dances became his way of embracing and understanding the outside world. Though his time in a Trappist monastery proved to him that he was more suited to choreography than to life as a monk, Pan remained a deeply devout Roman Catholic throughout his creative life, a person firmly convinced of the powers of prayer. While he was rarely to be seen without several beautiful women at his side, it was no secret that Pan was homosexual and even had a life partner. As Pan worked at the nexus of the cinema industry's creative circles during the golden age of the film musical, this book traces not only Pan's personal life but also the history of the Hollywood musical itself. It is a study of Pan, who emerges here as a benevolent perfectionist, and equally of the stars, composers, and directors with whom he worked, from Astaire and Rogers to Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth, Elizabeth Taylor, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, Bob Fosse, George Gershwin, Samuel Goldwyn, and countless other luminaries of American popular entertainment. Author John Franceschina bases his telling of Pan's life on extensive first-hand research into Pan's unpublished correspondence and his own interviews. Pan enjoyed one of the most illustrious careers of any Hollywood dance director, and because his work also spanned across Broadway and television, this book will appeal to readers interested in musical theater history, dance history, and film.
Steven Sater
John Franceschina


The history of American theater would not have developed nor impacted the sound of music today without the composers, directors, and choreographers of incidental and dance music. From the earliest immigrant composers to mainstream maestros and film composers, their successes and sorrows mirrored the masses with failed marriages, alcoholism, earning a living, and dying alone and forgotten. Much of their music was destroyed in fires or lost while touring . . . until now.

Elaborating on the introduction and chronology in Volume 1 and the biographical profiles in Volume 2, the author explores the careers of the masterminds of music from Edgar Stillman Kelley to Charles Zimmerman, with more than 150 musical examples and extensive Notes.

About the author: composer John Franceschina served as Musical Director for more than 150 shows over 50 years. He served on the Musical Theatre Faculties at Florida State University, Syracuse University, and Pennsylvania State University. His previous published works include Sisters of Gore: Seven Gothic Melodramas by British Women, 1790–1843; Gore on Stage: The Plays of Catherine Gore; Homosexualities in the English Theatre: From Lyly to Wilde; Socialists, Socialites, and Sociopaths: Plays and Screenplays by Frank Tuttle; Rape, Incest, Murder! The Marquis de Sade on Stage (3 volumes); David Braham: The American Offenbach; Harry B. Smith: Dean of American Librettists; Duke Ellington’s Music for the Theatre; Hermes Pan: The Man Who Danced with Fred Astaire; and Music Theory through Musical Theatre.

 

John Franceschina
 

The history of American theater would not have developed nor impacted the sound of music today without the composers, directors, and choreographers of incidental and dance music. From the earliest immigrant composers to mainstream maestros and film composers, their successes and sorrows mirrored the masses with failed marriages, alcoholism, earning a living, and dying alone and forgotten. Much of their music was destroyed in fires or lost while touring . . . until now.

An introduction and chronology to the masterminds of music. This Volume 1 of 3 presents a detailed chronology and alphabetical lists of choreographers and dance arrangers of The Miraculous Mill (1795); The Archers (1796); Columbus (1797); The Voice of Nature (1803); The Tars from Tripoli (1806); The Indian Princess(1808); The Ethiop (1814); The Enterprise (1822); Cinderella (1837); Mazeppa (1838); Amelie (1838); Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852); The Seven Sisters! (1860); The Doctor of Alcantara (1862); King Linkum the First(1863); The Black Crook (1866); The Christian Martyrs (1867); The White Fawn (1868); Humpty Dumpty (1868); Ixion! (1868); Formosa (1869); The Little Frauds (1871); Evangeline (1874); Gambrinus (1875); The Mulligan Guard Ball! (1879); Fritz in Ireland (1879); Oedipus Tyrannus (1882); Excelsior (1883); Rosita (1884); Adonis (1884); Erminie (1886); Bluebeard, Jr. (1890); The Crystal Slipper (1890); Robin Hood (1891); A Trip to Chinatown (1891); Jupiter (1891); The Rainmaker of Syria (1893); America (1893); Tabasco (1894); The Wizard of the Nile (1895); El Capitan (1896); Santa Maria (1896);  The Belle of New York (1897);  Queen of the Ballet (1897); The Bride-Elect (1898); An Arabian Girl and Forty Thieves (1899); From Broadway to Tokio (1900); Florodora (1900); My Lady (1901); The Sleeping Beauty and the Beast (1901); A Chinese Honeymoon (1902); The Wizard of Oz (1903); Running for Office (1903); Babes in Toyland (1903); Mother Goose (1903); The Royal Chef (1904); Parsifalia (1904); A China Doll (1904); Miss Dolly Dollars (1905); The Vanderbilt Cup (1906); Folles of 1907 (1907); Azara (1907); Miss Pocahontas (1907); The Soul Kiss (1908); Bandanna Land (1908); The Silver Star (1909); Naughty Marietta (1910); The Pink Lady (1911); Temptations (1911); Treemonisha (1911); The Passing Show of 1914; Very Good Eddie (1915); The Pride of Race (1916); A Kiss for Cinderella(1916); Maytime (1917); Azora, the Daughter on Montezuma (1917); A Lonely Romeo (1919); Irene (1919); Sally (1920); Shuffle Along (1921); Music Box Revue (1921); George White’s Scandals (1922); Peaches(1923); Wildflower (1923); Runnin’ Wild (1923); Kid Boots (1923).

Subjects include: Max Steiner; Herbert Stothart; Sigmund Romberg; William Daly; Alfred Newman; Al Goodman; Rudolf Friml; Louis Gress; Julian Mitchell; Sammy Lee; Edward Royce; David Bennett; Ned Wayburn; Leon Errol; Charles J. Gebest; Raymond Hubbell; Victor Herbert; Alexander Reinagle; Raynor Taylor; James Hewitt; Victor Pelissier; Benjamin Carr; Trille Labarre; John Bray; Philip Trajetta; Charles Gilfert; Arthur Clifton; Charles E. Horn; Thomas Baker; Thomas Comer; George Loder; Anthony Reiff; Henry D. Beissenherz; Charles Koppitz; W.T. Peterschen; Harvey B. Dodworth; Alexander Tyte; George L. Fox; Julius Eichberg; James Gaspard Maeder; Robert Stoepel; Henry Tissington; Napier Lothian; Benjamin J. Deane; Auguste Predigan; Michael Connelly; Carlo Carle; Giuseppe Operti; Howard Glover; Davide Costa; Frederic Strebinger; Paolo Giorza; William H. Brinkworth; David Braham; Edward Harrigan; William Withers, Jr.; Alfred B. Sedgwick; Fred W. Zaulig; Henry Wannemacher; George Loesch; Charles Puerner; Imre Kiralfy; Bolossy Kiralfy; Joseph K. Emmet; Edward Mollenhauer; Ferdinand Von Olker; Benjamin E. Woolf; Henry Woolson Morse; Fred Perkins; Theodore Bendix; John Knowles Paine; Romualdo Marenco; Silas G. Pratt; W. S. Mullaly; Henry Widmer; Fred J. Eustis; Willard Spenser; Charles Zimmerman; Reginald De Koven; Gustave Kerker; Alexander Spencer; Edward Solomon; Richard Stahl; J. Clarence West; Edward Jakobowski; William Lloyd Bowron; Adam Itzel, Jr.; Jesse Williams; Watty Hydes; W.H. Batchelor; William Furst; Rudolph Aronson; Angelo Venanzi; Thomas Pearsal Thorne; Henry Waller; Ludwig Englander; George W. Chadwick; Percy Gaunt; Maurice Levi; Julian Edwards; Frederick W. Mills; John Stromberg; Thomas Pearsall Thorne; John Philip Sousa; Oscar Hammerstein I; A. Baldwin Sloane; Herman Perlet; Edward E. Rice; Will Marion Cook; Alfred E. Aarons; Louie Maurice; Gus Salzer; Frederic Solomon; John J. Braham; Will Accooe; Arthur Weld; Louis F. Gottschalk; Harry Lawson Heartz; Edward W. Corliss; Melville Ellis; Isidore Witmark; Frederick V. Bowers; Jean Schwartz; Alfred G. Wathall; Henry Kimball Hadley; J. Rosamond Johnson; Bert Williams; Manuel Klein; Harry Von Tilzer; John W. Bratton; Robert Hood Bowers; Gene Salzer; George M. Cohan; R.H. Burnside; Herbert Gresham; William Loraine; Max Hoffmann; James Reese Europe; Cuthbert Clarke; Al Johns; Joe Jordan; Henry L. Sanford; John S. Zamecnik; Gustav Luders; Harold Orlob; Karl Hoschna; W.T. Francis; Augustus Barratt; Frank Tours; James P. Johnson.

Illustrated. Index. Bibliography.

About the author: composer John Franceschina served as Musical Director for more than 150 shows over 50 years. He served on the Musical Theatre Faculties at Florida State University, Syracuse University, and Pennsylvania State University. His previous published works include Sisters of Gore: Seven Gothic Melodramas by British Women, 1790–1843; Gore on Stage: The Plays of Catherine Gore; Homosexualities in the English Theatre: From Lyly to Wilde; Socialists, Socialites, and Sociopaths: Plays and Screenplays by Frank Tuttle; Rape, Incest, Murder! The Marquis de Sade on Stage (3 volumes); David Braham: The American Offenbach; Harry B. Smith: Dean of American Librettists; Duke Ellington’s Music for the Theatre; Hermes Pan: The Man Who Danced with Fred Astaire; and Music Theory through Musical Theatre.

John Franceschina
Armed with an eighth-grade education, an inexhaustible imagination, and an innate talent for dancing, Hermes Pan (1909-1990) was a boy from Tennessee who became the most prolific, popular, and memorable choreographer of the glory days of the Hollywood musical. While he may be most well-known for the Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers musicals which he choreographed at RKO film studios, he also created dances at Twentieth Century-Fox, M-G-M, Paramount, and later for television, winning both the Oscar and the Emmy for best choreography. In Hermes Pan: The Man Who Danced with Fred Astaire, Pan emerges as a man in full, an artist inseparable from his works. He was a choreographer deeply interested in his dancers' personalities, and his dances became his way of embracing and understanding the outside world. Though his time in a Trappist monastery proved to him that he was more suited to choreography than to life as a monk, Pan remained a deeply devout Roman Catholic throughout his creative life, a person firmly convinced of the powers of prayer. While he was rarely to be seen without several beautiful women at his side, it was no secret that Pan was homosexual and even had a life partner. As Pan worked at the nexus of the cinema industry's creative circles during the golden age of the film musical, this book traces not only Pan's personal life but also the history of the Hollywood musical itself. It is a study of Pan, who emerges here as a benevolent perfectionist, and equally of the stars, composers, and directors with whom he worked, from Astaire and Rogers to Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth, Elizabeth Taylor, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, Bob Fosse, George Gershwin, Samuel Goldwyn, and countless other luminaries of American popular entertainment. Author John Franceschina bases his telling of Pan's life on extensive first-hand research into Pan's unpublished correspondence and his own interviews. Pan enjoyed one of the most illustrious careers of any Hollywood dance director, and because his work also spanned across Broadway and television, this book will appeal to readers interested in musical theater history, dance history, and film.
John Franceschina
Armed with an eighth-grade education, an inexhaustible imagination, and an innate talent for dancing, Hermes Pan (1909-1990) was a boy from Tennessee who became the most prolific, popular, and memorable choreographer of the glory days of the Hollywood musical. While he may be most well-known for the Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers musicals which he choreographed at RKO film studios, he also created dances at Twentieth Century-Fox, M-G-M, Paramount, and later for television, winning both the Oscar and the Emmy for best choreography. In Hermes Pan: The Man Who Danced with Fred Astaire, Pan emerges as a man in full, an artist inseparable from his works. He was a choreographer deeply interested in his dancers' personalities, and his dances became his way of embracing and understanding the outside world. Though his time in a Trappist monastery proved to him that he was more suited to choreography than to life as a monk, Pan remained a deeply devout Roman Catholic throughout his creative life, a person firmly convinced of the powers of prayer. While he was rarely to be seen without several beautiful women at his side, it was no secret that Pan was homosexual and even had a life partner. As Pan worked at the nexus of the cinema industry's creative circles during the golden age of the film musical, this book traces not only Pan's personal life but also the history of the Hollywood musical itself. It is a study of Pan, who emerges here as a benevolent perfectionist, and equally of the stars, composers, and directors with whom he worked, from Astaire and Rogers to Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth, Elizabeth Taylor, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, Bob Fosse, George Gershwin, Samuel Goldwyn, and countless other luminaries of American popular entertainment. Author John Franceschina bases his telling of Pan's life on extensive first-hand research into Pan's unpublished correspondence and his own interviews. Pan enjoyed one of the most illustrious careers of any Hollywood dance director, and because his work also spanned across Broadway and television, this book will appeal to readers interested in musical theater history, dance history, and film.
John Franceschina
Music Theory through Musical Theatre takes a new and powerful approach to music theory. Written specifically for students in music theatre programs, it offers music theory by way of musical theatre. Not a traditional music theory text, Music Theory through Musical Theatre tackles the theoretical foundations of musical theatre and musical theatre literature with an emphasis on what students will need to master in preparation for a professional career as a performer. Veteran music theatre musician John Franceschina brings his years of experience to bear in a book that offers musical theatre educators an important tool in equipping students with what is perhaps the most important element of being a performer: the ability to understand the language of music in the larger dramatic context to which it contributes. The book uses examples exclusively from music theater repertoire, drawing from well-known and more obscure shows and songs. Musical sight reading is consistently at the forefront of the lessons, teaching students to internalize notated music quickly and accurately, a particularly necessary skill in a world where songs can be added between performances. Franceschina consistently links the concepts of music theory and vocal coaching, showing students how identifying the musical structure of and gestures within a piece leads to better use of their time with vocal coaches and ultimately enables better dramatic choices. Combining formal theory with practical exercises, Music Theory through Musical Theatre will be a lifelong resource for students in musical theatre courses, dog-eared and shelved beside other professional resource volumes.
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