Workshops for 7th to 12th grades:A printable copy of our 12-page School Notes is chock-full of ideas and details.
THE POSTCARD PROJECTThe class looks at war from a civilian perspective. What would you do if the Nazis occupied your town - resist, collaborate, hide, run away, ignore them? Each student will write a postcard to a friend recounting a specific event they "experienced" during the war. They may write in French according to their skill level.
EXPLICATION DE TEXTEText analysis is especially effective as a workshop before one of Claudia's shows. Claudia will help the class dissect one or two of the songs in a classic textual analysis à la française. The examination will include historical content and context, stories of its interpreters, analysis of poetic form, grammar, musical construction, characters, and story lines.
SONG CIRCLES and CRITICS CIRCLESSong circles are small discussion groups that meet after the performance to examine the program from different perspectives. Each student will have role assignment such as: historian, music critic, theatre critic, news journalist, People magazine interviewer, and restaurant critic. They will then follow the show with their specific role in mind. Each critics' circle meets after the show to prepare comments and questions according to their role. Then the class will come together to present their reports. A more extensive workshop (based on greater familiarity with the specific songs in the show) allows the students to divide into "song circles." There is one group per song and one person per role. Having critically examined the song and lyrics ahead of time (from prior recordings and hearing the current performance), each student comes to the group with notes needed to perform their specific job.
Master classes are great opportunities for theatre and music students to strengthen their interpretative abilities in song. Claudia works with students 8th grade and up on their arias, art songs, Broadway tunes, and more. Guidelines for a Master Class are a good place to start the process.
Video clips of our work with young singers can be found here.