Musical Theatre Song Writing

Musical Theatre Song Writing
  • Level(s) of study: Short course
  • Study mode(s): Short course
  • Location: City Campus
  • Starting: 23 April 2020
  • Course duration: Thursdays 6 - 8:30 pm for ten weeks

This course combines practical and theoretical training in the art of writing songs for musicals.

Specifically, it focuses on the craft and skills required to write a musical, as well as the business of getting work developed and produced.

It’s delivered through a combination of lectures and workshops, and culminates in a performance.

This course is for anyone who is passionate about musical theatre.

It’s aimed at both the beginner and more experienced lyricists, musician or composer.

You don't have to be experienced in reading and writing musical notation - the course is more about embracing your own creativity.

Whilst independent projects will be encouraged, there will also be a set project to show the value of working collectively as a group.

Practical exercises will be supported by theory of the creative process, exploring Aristotle’s elements, Engel’s musical elements and the twelve-point structure of the musical, from opening number to the grand finale.

What will I gain?

You’ll leave this course with a firm understanding of the genre, finely honed creative song writing skills, an awareness of the business and a network of writers and potential collaborators.

Tutor profile: Joel Hall is a composer, lyricist and educator who has a Masters in Music (with distinction) from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.

He is represented by Rachel Daniels at Berlin Associates.

He previously co-lead the Young Composers Project at Birmingham City University, a scheme set up to support young composers in the UK through theoretical and practical workshops.

Joel has also taught extensively at academies across Nottinghamshire.

He’s currently under commission from Coventry Belgrade theatre to write a new musical with Chris Monks entitled The Last Vampire, based on a series of popular books by his grandfather, playwright Willis Hall.

Previously, Joel has scored Judgment Day under the direction of John Adams (Patrick Centre, Birmingham Hippodrome), The Flying Frog (Willis Hall), The Last Christmas Tree (Valerie Hall), Grandma Claus: Waiting for Santa (UK Tour), and The Hatter In Winterland (Cheltenham Playhouse).

He’s also developing a new musical with video game writers Graeme Norgate and Ross Tregenza.

Indicative maximum class size: 15

Any questions?

Contact the short course team:


Tel: +44(0)115 848 2813

What you'll study

On this course you will:

  • generate ideas by exploring the history and future of the musical as a genre
  • analyse and discuss the works of Rodgers and Hammerstein, Leonard Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Stephen Schwartz, Stiles and Drewe, Lin-Manuel Miranda and others
  • improve your storytelling skills using music and words
  • work collaboratively
  • learn how to maximise audience engagement
  • develop a distinctive, original voice in your song writing
  • be introduced to the business of musical theatre, and what makes a work producible.

Fees and funding

The fee for this course is £275.

Payment is due at the time of booking.

The fee for this course is £275.

Payment is due at the time of booking.

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418