Verdi and Wagner: Parallel Careers | Newberry

Verdi and Wagner: Parallel Careers

Led by John Gibbons. Six sessions. 2 - 4 pm.
Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Wednesdays, September 23 - October 28

2 - 4 pm

As a precaution to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Adult Education Seminars Program’s Fall 2020 term will continue to be held virtually. Virtual seminars meet via Zoom video conference and use email and Google Drive folders to share resources and communicate with instructors and participants. For more information about the Newberry’s virtual seminars and these tools, including a Zoom tutorial, please see our Virtual Seminars FAQ page. If you have questions about online learning, please feel free to reach out to

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Seminar Description

Essentially defining the musical culture of the nineteenth century, the operas of the Italian Giuseppe Verdi and the German Richard Wagner continue to form the most stable theatrical repertory of the present day. Through their work, Wagner and Verdi both offered acute psychological insights while also delivering cultural criticism in memorably dramatic style. This seminar explores each composer’s extensive body of work through video and analysis.

Six sessions. Registration – $230

John Gibbons teaches piano, composition, music theory, and a variety of music appreciation classes for adults. He holds a PhD in music composition from the University of Chicago and is a long-time instructor at the University of Chicago Graham School and the Newberry.

Materials List


  • There are no required materials for this seminar.

First Reading:

  • There is no reading assignment for the first session of this seminar.

Registration Information

Online registration opens at 9 am (CDT) on Tuesday, September 1st.

Please note: Due to COVID-19, the Adult Education Seminars staff is working remotely and will be unable to process registration over the phone. For more information about registration, including a guide to online registration, see our Registration Information page. Questions? Please contact seminars program staff via email at

We offer a 10% discount to members, seniors, and students.

This seminar is part of the Newberry’s Adult Education Seminars Program. Learn more about registering for a seminar, program policies, or teaching a seminar.