Virtual Classroom

for Opera Based Learning

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Writing Lyrics For a Character

Enjoy a video preview (right) and explore the learning guides below. Teaching artists are available for LIVE video instruction sessions to accompany each video. 
 
This learning series requires that you obtain a license to view/download content. If you'd like to purchase a license to download the full available content or to discuss creating a custom learning series for your students, please contact VirtualClassroom@MetGuild.org or use the link below.
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Video One:

Lyrics 101

In this video we learn "what is a lyric?" We will also explore the "Lyric Writer's Toolbox" to get you started writing your own original lyrics TODAY! We also begin to learn about basic song structure (AABA). *To use the digital/fillable .pdf, please download the file and open in Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar program.

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Video 1 PDF

Learning Guide

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Video 1 DIGITAL

Learning Guide

Key Student Learning Standard Addressed:

NYSED Language Standard 5

CCSS.ELA-Language.CCRA.L.5

Video Two:

Writing From an Image

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Video 2 PDF

Learning Guide

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Video 2 DIGITAL

Learning Guide

Key Student Learning Standard Addressed:

NYSED Reading Standard 1

CCSS.ELA-Reading.CCRA.R1

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Video Three:

Character Exploration

In this third video of the 5-part series, Brandon begins to focus our writing about one character from our chosen image. Who is this character? What makes a character interesting? Learn how to create richly detailed text from the perspective of your character to create a "song moment" from your chosen image. *To use the digital/fillable .pdf, please download the file and open in Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar program.

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Video 3 PDF

Learning Guide

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Video 3 DIGITAL

Learning Guide

Key Student Learning Standard Addressed:

NYSED Writing Standard 3

CCSS.ELA-Writing.CCRA.W3

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Video Four:

Writing Through a Character's Voice

In this fourth video of the 5-part series, Brandon helps us further develop our ability to write text from the perspective of a character in our chosen still image. What is Empathy? What is a character's voice, and how is that expressed in a lyric? What is a monologue? How do I write a monologue in my character's voice? We also take a look at the art of collaboration, and how collaborating with others can help us deepen our writing. *To use the digital/fillable .pdf, please download the file and open in Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar program.

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Video 4 PDF

Learning Guide

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Video 4 DIGITAL

Learning Guide

Key Student Learning Standard Addressed:

NYSED Writing Standard 3

CCSS.ELA-Writing.CCRA.W3

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Video Five:

Crafting Your Lyric

In this final video of a 5-part series, Brandon helps us put all the pieces together to create our own original, character-driven song lyrics. We review the "Lyric Writing Toolbox," the AABA song format, and what information needs to go in each section. Then we take our character monologue work from the previous lesson and learn how to transform that into our final lyrics. *To use the digital/fillable .pdf, please download the file and open in Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar program.

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Video 5 PDF

Learning Guide

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Video 5 DIGITAL

Learning Guide

Key Student Learning Standard Addressed:

NYSED Writing Standard 3

CCSS.ELA-Writing.CCRA.W3

Additional Information: (any additional/supplemental information related to this post will appear below)
Brandon Anderson, Teaching Artist

Brandon Anderson is an award winning singer/songwriter, composer/lyricist, and teaching artist. He is the recipient of the ASCAP Foundation Frederick Loewe Award and the Kennedy Center ACTF Award for his musical theatre compositions. His work has been performed at Lincoln Center, The Metropolitan Opera, Barrington Stage, Joe’s Pub, The Laurie Beechman, The Living Room, Rockwood Music Hall, The Bitter End, and countless venues across the country. Musical theater works include, The Artist & The Scientist (Off Off Broadway), The Trojan War, Be Young and Shut Up, and Home/Front. As a singer/songwriter, Brandon has been named a Critics Pick by Time Out NY and listed as #8 on the Advocate's Hot Sheet. He was a finalist in the Ultimate Singer/Songwriter Contest and has crossed the country on two national tours. Releasing three albums, Brandon has been featured on NPR's Lake Effect, The Shepherd Express, and in many regional publications across the country.

​Brandon is also the Artistic Director and Dramaturg for the CDP Program in residence at Tisch's Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program, which produces readings and workshop productions of new musicals. He is also an adjunct professor, teaching performers how to approach new works of musical theatre. Brandon also has extensive work in arts education as a master teaching artist for the Metropolitan Opera Guild, where he leads student residencies in the Students Compose Opera program and professional development for teachers from across the country. He was recently hired as a member of Tectonic Theater Project's teaching faculty and teaches devising workshops using their Moment Work method. Also he has been hired as a teaching artist by Lincoln Center Theater for the Songwriting In Schools Program.

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