Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

Shakespeare in Music


Price: $95 for OLLI Members    $115 for non-members

Dates & Time: Tuesday, Mar 5, 12, 19, 26, & April 2, 10:00-12:00

Class Type: In-Person

Instructor:   John Kendall Bailey

27 in stock

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Course Description

Composers have long been inspired by the works of William Shakespeare. His plays have been transformed into numerous operas, and have inspired ballets, overtures, and tone poems. Romeo & Juliet alone has been the basis of works by Berlioz, Tchaikovsky, Gounod, Prokofiev, Bellini, Delius, Bernstein, and more! Verdi was especially taken by the bard’s works, creating operatic versions of MacbethOthelloand The Merry Wives of Windsor, but died before he could realize his long-intended version of King Lear. And of course the plays themselves call for incidental music, which has been written by composers from Mendelssohn to Korngold to Sibelius. Ralph Vaughan Williams found inspiration from Shakespeare frequently, with his opera Sir John in Love, the vocal masterpiece Serenade to Music, and choral settings of his texts. The sonnets have also inspired composers from many genres to set them to music.


Additional information

Course Term


Day of the Week



John Kendall Bailey, music director, conductor, chorus master

Event Type


Event Details

Date: 2024-03-05

Start time: 10:00 a.m. PST

End time: 12:00 p.m. PST

Venue: In-Person, Concord Center


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