Community Classroom

How do songs develop character and progress plot in musical theatre?

Headshot of Eliza Gardiner

Eliza Gardiner shares the inspiration behind her ballads

Eliza Gardiner rocked the stage with ballads from her original musical narrative Concessions of a Wannabe Rock Star during her fall 2022 Arts and Humanities Colloquium lecture.

Gardiner used her ballads to illustrate how songs are used in musical theatre to develop characters, progress plot, entertain and provoke thought. During her lecture she discussed the poetic structure, use of metaphor and inspiration behind the ballads. Listen to Gardiner’s Conversations in Arts and Humanities podcast interview.

Gardiner teaches theatre history, public speaking and applied theatre at VIU. She is a commissioned playwright and director with 20 years of experience. Gardiner has previously delivered Arts and Humanities lectures, including Great Queens: Scenes during the 2021 season.

Watch Gardiner’s presentation:

Since its beginning in 2009, the Arts and Humanities Colloquium presentations have engendered conversations about ideas among members of the Arts and Humanities faculty and their communities both at VIU and in the mid-Island region. Presenters have shown how important the arts and humanities are to understanding today’s world.


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