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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

About Performing Arts Programs

Lecture/Seminar
Wednesday, February 2, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. ET

Why are William Shakespeare’s plays still considered essential reading? How can lessons from his Elizabethan theatrical universe help us to better understand social and political conflicts we confront today? Explore three of the Bard’s great tragedies to discover why Shakespeare remains vital and relevant with Joseph Luzzi, professor of comparative literature at Bard College.

Course
Thursday, February 3, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Using a medley of filmed performances, documentary filmmaker and cultural historian Sara Lukinson traces how some of our favorite love songs from the American songbook came to be in a 3-session winter series and how re-imaginings by different artists, unexpected arrangements, and changing times transformed them into something more. This session focuses on "Autumn Leaves," "Send in the Clowns," and "This Nearly Was Mine."

Lecture/Seminar
Tuesday, February 15, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

His unique voice and passionate style made Ray Charles one of the most beloved and influential musicians of our time. John Edward Hasse, curator emeritus of American music at the Museum of American History, celebrates the music, the man, and his place in our country's cultural history

Course
Thursday, February 17, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Using a medley of filmed performances, documentary filmmaker and cultural historian Sara Lukinson traces how some of our favorite love songs from the American songbook came to be in a 3-session winter series and how re-imaginings by different artists, unexpected arrangements, and changing times transformed them into something more. This session focuses on "What a Wonderful World" and "Smile."

Lecture/Seminar
Thursday, February 17, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. ET

Seventy years on, the global cataclysm known as World War II, as well as its withering aftermath, continues to capture the attention and imaginations of filmmakers around the world. Drawing on a variety of clips, film expert Marc Lapadula explores how several films portray historical figures and real-life incidents that profoundly impacted and devastated lives.

Program
Thursday, February 24, 2022 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

American jazz trumpeter, bandleader, composer, and NEA Jazz Master Joseph Benjamin Wilder left a broad footprint that still resonates in the world of music today. In a virtual concert, the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra celebrates Wilder’s unique talents during what would be his 100th year.

Course
Wednesday, March 2, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

If you’ve always wanted to learn the language and elements of musical notation and composition or are a singer or instrumentalist who has never mastered reading music, this interactive course led by music educator and conductor Ernest Johnson offers the perfect opportunity.

Lecture/Seminar
Monday, March 7, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

For more than a century, Hollywood has relied on star power as the most reliable way to draw an audience. From the early days of silent movies, the film studios have recognized the crucial role stars played at the box office. Trace the history of movie stardom, how the star system was changed by television, and how actors have redefined what it means to be a star today with Brian Rose, a professor emeritus at Fordham University.

Course
Wednesday, March 9, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

From early megastars like Paderewski to marquee-name composers such as Tchaikovsky and Dvorák, America has long drawn members of Europe’s music world as a place to perform, work, and in some cases, settle. Speaker and concert pianist Rachel Franklin explores the siren call of America to musical artists and their lasting impressions on our cultural life.

Members-Only Program
Friday, March 11, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. ET

In this members-only series led by veteran arts educator Roberta Gasbarre and in celebration of Women’s History Month, actress, singer, composer, and activist Carol Lynn Maillard—a founding member of the legendary a cappella ensemble Sweet Honey in the Rock—recounts how music, the stage, and spirituality shaped her amazing life.

Lecture/Seminar
Saturday, March 12, 2022 - 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

In the midst of writing The Ring of the Nibelung, the most monumental artistic work of the 19th century, Richard Wagner took a breather. His intention was to write works that were smaller in scale and easier to perform. Using excerpts from the finest representations on video, opera and classical music, scholar Saul Lilienstein unearths the treasures this great composer created beyond the Ring.

Lecture/Seminar
Wednesday, March 16, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Opera and classical music scholar Saul Lilienstein explores sublime examples of the great synthesis of the arts, from the Schubert songs inspired by Goethe’s poetry; to Igor Stravinsky, finding a modern voice within Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex; and more.

Course
Thursday, March 17, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Our favorite moments in movies never leave us. In a 4-session series, Emmy-winning documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits favorite films and characters, the people who dreamed them up, the actors who brought them to life, and the lasting memories they made in our lives and our myths. This session focuses on films with Barbra Streisand and Julie Andrews.

Lecture/Seminar
Wednesday, March 23, 2022 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Walk the virtual red carpet with Washington City Paper film critic Noah Gittell in an evening that focuses on all things Oscar, from Academy Awards history and trivia to discussions of this unusual year's nominations and behind-the-scenes stories.

Course
Thursday, March 31, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Our favorite moments in movies never leave us. In a 4-session series, Emmy-winning documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits favorite films and characters, the people who dreamed them up, the actors who brought them to life, and the lasting memories they made in our lives and our myths. This session focuses on films with Sidney Poitier and Sean Connery.

Tour
April 10 - 11, 2022, 7:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. ET

Brooklyn offers plenty of delights for lovers of art, music, nature, and of course, food. On this two-day visit, arts journalist and former Brooklynite Richard Selden introduces you to several of the borough’s top attractions.

Course
Thursday, April 14, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Our favorite moments in movies never leave us. In a 4-session series, Emmy-winning documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits favorite films and characters, the people who dreamed them up, the actors who brought them to life, and the lasting memories they made in our lives and our myths. This session focuses on films with James Earl Jones and Jason Robards.

Course
Tuesday, April 19, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Conductor Ernest Johnson builds on his Introduction to Music Theory course in an interactive series for experienced singers and instrumentalists. Content includes an analysis of melody and harmony in greater depth and detail; weekly assignments in ear-training, sight-reading, and composition; and instructor-led musical dictation.

Course
Thursday, April 28, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Our favorite moments in movies never leave us. In a 4-session series, Emmy-winning documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits favorite films and characters, the people who dreamed them up, the actors who brought them to life, and the lasting memories they made in our lives and our myths. This session focuses on films with Steve Martin and Mel Brooks.