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Events

I am presenting a series of talks across the US for One Day University in 2016/17. Here are the currently scheduled dates and locations. In addition to these, I will be speaking for other organizations as well (please see below for dates and locations)

September 18 Burlington, VT
September 24 Spokane, WA
October 15 New Orleans, LA
October 22 Houston, TX
November 13 St. Petersburg, FL
November 20 Palm Beach, FL
December 4 Los Angeles, CA
February 4 Naples, FL
February 12 Washington, DC
March 25 Sarasota, FL
March 26 Stuart, FL
April 1 Richmond, VA

ADDITIONAL LECTURES & PERFORMANCES

September 13 Baltimore, MD. The Suburban Club
October 11 Baltimore, MD. Peabody Conservatory
October 29 Washington, DC. Building the Music Capital Conference
February 13 Washington, DC. Aspen Foundation
February 27 Rome, Italy. American Academy in Rome
March 19 Nashville, TN. Gateway Chamber Orchestra
May 4 New Orleans, LA. Jazz Fest (sponsored by the American-Italian
Cultural Center)

Lecture Topics for 2016/17

What Makes Frank Sinatra Great?

Frank Sinatra gave 20th-century America a voice. Through his music, stage shows, films and abashedly public private life, he offered audiences a vision of the "American Dream" that contrasted greatly with the suburban ideal of the hardworking man. Sinatra was entirely in tune with his audiences' needs and desires. But this isn't what made him great. As this lecture demonstrates Sinatra's name lives on because of his distinctive musical style. His phrasing and tone, the timbre of his voice: these are the qualities that set him apart. Using numerous musical examples, Anna Celenza traces the origins of the famous "Sinatra Sound" and reveals how, over the last half century, it has influenced a disparate array of musical styles and genres that make up the kaleidoscopic nature of today's American soundtrack.Sinatra is great, because his music is still with us. His "voice" now joined with others seeking to find their own way.

Gershwin, Ellington, and the Search for an American Sound

What is the American Sound? Does such a thing exist in the realm of concert music? During the 1920s and 30s, composers, music critics, entertainment executives and audiences believed in the idea of an American Sound, and they worked hard to promote their various points of view in the concert hall, via newspaper articles, through advertising and on film. This course explores the origins of two quintessential American masterpieces -- George Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue and Duke Ellington's Symphony in Black -- and their relationship to contemporary American culture. As participants will discover over the course of the presentation, Gershwin and Ellington knew one another, and they each looked to the music of the other when composing. Both Rhapsody in Blue and Symphony in Black were composed in an attempt to capture the essence of the "modern" American experience and blur the lines between classical music, popular music, and jazz.

Using film clips, music excerpts, and popular dance steps from the 1920s and 30s, Professor Celenza will introduce participants to the wide range of musical genres and styles that influenced Gershwin and Ellington (from spirituals, blues, and Klezmer music to Tin Pan Alley songs, opera, symphonic forms and Ragtime) and facilitate an open discussion concerning music's current role in defining American culture.

Music that Changed America

Music permeates our lives. Thanks to technology, it is always with us... via the radio, our smart phones, TV commercials, film music, even the streamed music at our local malls and favorite restaurants. Technology has made it easy for us to put music in the background. The goal of this lecture is to bring it front and center again.
As this lecture demonstrates, music does not simply reflect culture ... it changes it. To demonstrate just how such changes come about, she highlights six musical masterpieces that changed America. These include: an 18th-century drinking tune that defined American patriotism, an early 20th-century concert work that redefined Americans' concept of "music," an orchestral suite and ballad from the 1930s that fueled the need for nature conservation and the Civil Rights movement, a musical from the late 1950s that inadvertently strengthened negative hispanic stereotypes and a 1980s pop album that changed American foreign policy.