Notes from the director... - June 2021
by Heidi Turnquist, Director of Education & Ginevra Ralph, Director of Community & Cultural Services
The Shedd Community Music School is extremely pleased to announce the naming of our musical theatre department as The E. Y. Harburg Academy for Musical Theatre in honor of renowned American lyricist E. Y. “Yip” Harburg (1896-1981), who, within a rich long career, wrote the lyrics Finian's Rainbow, Cabin In The Sky and The Wizard of Oz . This past spring, the Harburg family officially accepted our request to make this change in its acknowledgement of The Shedd Institute and Community Music School’s ongoing commitment to classic musical theatre and training in all the aspects that go into making a musical...and of our especial love for Yip Harburg as one of the greatest and "most fun" lyricists of the Classic Songbook.
Composers, lyricists, musicians, performers, and the tech crew all have a part in making a musical happen. Most people remember their favorite songwriters and singers, but not the people whose words helped make those beloved songs memorable. The Shedd champions lyricists as much as we do the composers and performers who helped create “the American Songbook”. Lyricist E.Y. Harburg wrote what may be the most memorable of all musical theatre songs, “Over the Rainbow”, along with many more, including "It's Only A Paper Moon", "How Are Things In Glocca Morra?", "Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe", "Brother, Can You Spare A Dime", "Old Devil Moon", and that funniest of funny songs "Lydia, The Tattooed Lady"! Yet, few people recognize his name. The Shedd is proud to bring that name to the forefront with The E. Y. Harburg Academy for Musical Theater and deeply honored that his family has trusted us with that honor.
Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead Our Harburg Story: The Shedd’s musical theatre training programs are created for students of all ages, skills, and skill levels across all aspects of musical theatre. The Revue is a bi-annual performance intensive for high schoolers, each time themed after a particular performer, composer, or lyricist. In 2018 the winter Revue showcased one of our favorite lyricists, Yip Harburg, with students introducing biographical vignettes about Harburg prior to singing their selected songs.
To our great surprise we learned that Yip’s grandson Tom and his family were planning to attend the first of the two performances! The students were even more surprised when we introduced him backstage following the show. After their initial shock, they peppered Tom with questions about his grandfather and the veracity of their stories. These students will never forget Yip Harburg!!
Soon afterwards the Harburgs attended The Shedd’s production of The Wizard of Oz, seeing it for probably their 5,000th time. Nevertheless, they enjoyed it thoroughly and laughed just as hard as everyone else at our truncated Munchkins. These experiences exemplify both the ongoing freshness, creativity and timelessness of this classic American art form, as well as the magnetic wizardry of lyricists like E. Y. “Yip” Harburg.
Term Announcements
- Summer session 2021 begins Monday, June 21
- Begin private lessons anytime!
- Sunday, July 4 (Independence Day) The Shedd is closed.
- Summer SongFest! (4 one-week camps!) (Aug 1 - 27)
- The Music Box (4 options) (Jun 21-Aug 26)
- The Revue: Judy Garland (Jun 21-Jul 9)
- Mariachi Intro (Jun 21-Jul 2)
- Mariachi Advanced (Jul 5-16)
Focus on Summer Camps
songfest logo
Summer SongFest 2021!
Every year, elementary school children enjoy The Shedd Institute’s Summer SongFest, one-week music enrichment camps with kid-friendly themes. This year's themes are:
Loco-Motion! (August 2-6)
At The Circus! (August 9-13)
Around The World! (August 16-20)
Outer Space! (August 23-27)
Each camp introduces children to the world of American sounds through song and instrumental music, dance, visual arts, rhythm games, folktales, and much more! Campers will learn about, listen to, and sing a wide range of American songs related to camp themes ("It's Only A Paper Moon", “Freight Train”, “I'm An Old Cowhand”, "When You Wish Upon A Star", "I've Been Working On The Railroad", "Crocodile Rock", and “A Bicycle Built For Two” to name just a few!).
Participants will also get to play the ukulele, drums and piano! Even more fun awaits campers as they make their own instruments, create stage sets for an end-of-camp show, and enjoy healthy, themed snacks--Muffaletta, Martian Soup (aka green Jello) or Mozzarella balls anyone?
kids playing violin
The Music Box
Is your child interested in music, but isn’t sure what instrument they want to play? Not sure where to start with their music education? Come to The Music Box! Students get hands-on experience in a variety of instruments, movement styles, songs, and music crafts!
This summer The Shedd is offering 4 sections of Music Box, all limited to 10 students, and full-term enrollment: two 55 min sections which meet 2x per week: (Mon/Wed, 4:30-5:25 pm) and (Tue/Thu, 4:30-5:25 pm) and two 1 hr 25 min sections which also meet 2x per week: (Mon/Wed, 3-4:25 pm) and (Tue/Thu, 3-4:25 pm).
Mariachi del Shedd
Mariachi del Shedd 2021
Fernell López leads 2 Mariachi del Shedd camps this summer, one for beginners and one for seasoned Mariachi musicians. Mariachi del Shedd Intro Camp (Jun 21-Jul 2) is designed especially for new members, while Mariachi del Shedd Advanced Camp (Jul 5-16) is geared towards teens and adults with more experience in the genre.
The Revue
The Harburg Academy
The Revue: Summer 2021
The Shedd Institute's intensive training camp for young adults returns June 19th. Taught by actors, singers and dancers at the top of their profession, this 3 week camp affords the dedicated thespian a compact, serious course in what it really takes to be a "triple threat". Read more...
The Eye Center
Shedd Presenting Sponsor