online classes | NewMusicalsInc

online classes

online craft labs

The  Craft Labs are specialized online courses designed to focus on  particulars of each discipline in musical theatre. Labs are structured with small, bite-sized exercises that  illustrate and emphasize a particular aspect of craft. Some exercises will take  place entirely within the context of the lab itself; other exercises are meant  to be worked out on your own time.  Each unit concludes with an assignment which is assessed by a lab instructor, providing direct one-on-one feedback.

Since the Labs are offered completely online, you can take them at any  time, on your own schedule.  Many people take the Labs in conjunction with the Core Curriculum, although we often advise taking Labs PRIOR to the Core Curriculum to help with the overall workload.  The Labs are developed and offered through our sister-site, WRITINGMUSICALTHEATRE.COMCheck out the site for more  specific info  on each of the Labs.

(Note: if you are planning to take the Core Curriculum, additional Labs  are DISCOUNTED to $495 each.  Email admin@nmi.org  for info on how to claim your Core discount price.)

book lab

The Book Lab is designed as an introduction to writing the  book of a musical while also outlining the collaborative steps involved in  creating a new musical with the whole team. The  collaborative process is explored through six units including: THE IDEA, THE  OUTLINE, THE ROUGH DRAFT, ADDING SONGS, REVISIONS, and FINISHING TOUCHES. Along  the way, other topics include:

  • Unwavering want
  • Character Diction
  • Action Loops
  • Dialogue
  • Conflict
  • Adaptation
  • Exposition
  • Incorporating Songs
  • Language of an outline
  • Dealing with Feedback
  • Story structure
  • Creating a character worksheet
  • Pitches

The fee for the Book Lab is $595.

This course qualifies as the Book Lab element of the Core Curriculum.
(One Lab fee is included in the Core Curriculum enrollment; for Core participants, additional labs are discounted to $495.)

Register for the Book Lab

lyric lab

The Lyric Lab is an intensive and detailed course designed for the writer who is deeply serious about honing essential skills in the lyricist’s tool-kit.  There are twenty-one videos, on topics which include:

  • Prosody
  • The Verse
  • Progressions
  • Structure
  • The Refrain
  • The purpose of a song
  • Rhyme
  • The Chorus
  • Which structure to use?
  • Alliteration
  • Spotting Songs
  • Writing with parameters

Also: Interactive Tests, Exercises, Assignments, One-on-One feedback with evaluator.

The fee for the Lyric Lab is $795.

This course qualifies as the Lyric Lab element of the Core Curriculum.
(One Lab fee is included in the Core Curriculum enrollment; for Core participants, additional labs are discounted to $495.)

Register for the Lyric Lab

music lab

Write and format your musical professionally.  Videos, tests, exercises and interactive assignments on  the craft of composing for musical theatre, from Columbia College professor  Philip Seward. Topics include:

  • Setting a lyric
  • Creating a Piano Arrangement
  • Finding a rhythm in a lyric and using it to develop a melody
  • Creating a lead sheet (chord symbols and melody)
  • Working with a hook
  • Key signatures & accidentals
  • Driving melodically toward the climax of the song
  • Supporting the melody with a piano accompaniment
  • When to modulate
  • Composing Incidental Music
  • Composing for the music theatre voice (head voice, chest voice, belt, legit, timbre)
  • Formatting a Score: Dynamics, Expressive Markings, Pedaling, Rehearsal Marks, etc.
  • Vamps; safeties; jump cue; out on
  • Formatting voice parts
  • Swing notation
  • Integrating Script and Score

The fee for the Music Lab is $795.

This course qualifies as the Music Lab element of the Core Curriculum.
(One Lab fee is included in the Core Curriculum enrollment; for Core participants, additional labs are discounted to $495.)

Register for the Music Lab

additional labs

You might be interested in additional online labs, beyond the ones required for Core Curriculum.

outlining lab

In the Outlining Lab, you will be lead step-by-step through the process of developing a musical idea from concept through to a working outline, with detailed constructive feedback along the way from your evaluator.  By the end of this ten-unit course, you should have a well-developed and detailed outline that will solidly prepare you for the collaborative task of writing your new musical. Units covered include:

  • Six Steps to an Outline
  • 3-Phrase Beginning/Middle/End
  • Premise
  • Swill & Rough Drafts
  • The Outline
  • Revisions
  • Conflict
  • 20 Questions for your Outline
  • Language of an Outline
  • Dealing with Feedback
  • Pitch and Synopsis
  • One-Liners, Loglines

An outline can be an invaluable writer’s tool for clarifying the structure and story arc of a musical idea.  It can then serve as a blueprint for the rough draft that the collaborators will use to develop the new musical.  Writers who skip this important step in the development process are likely to find themselves bogged down with a partially written new show that is riddled with logical inconsistencies, and does not compellingly deliver the intentions of the creative team.  Don’t start writing until your outline is rock solid!

The fee for the Outlining Lab is $595.

Register for the Outlining Lab

advanced lyric lab

The Advanced Lyric Lab is for graduates of the Lyric Lab, and covers additional topics such as:

  • Linear Prosody
  • Conversational Prosody
  • Additional Progressions
  • Metaphor
  • Simile
  • List Songs and Twist Songs

The fee for the Advanced Lyric Lab is $795.

 (If taken together, the Lyric Lab and Advanced Lyric Lab are discounted to $600 each.)

Register for the Advanced Lyric Lab

musical theatre song lab

The Musical Theatre Song Lab provides an opportunity to create iconic musical theatre songs and receive critical feedback – even if you don’t have a collaborator. If you are a lyricist or a composer without a collaborator, you can get some practice with these song types by using our library of lyrics and music. The course contains six units: The Ballad, The Comedy Song, The Conflict Duet, The Ensemble, The Musical Scene, and the Disappointment Song. Each unit includes a definition of the type of song; a play to read; and an assignment to write a song based on the play. Your completed songs will be critiqued by WMT Staff. (You may also take the lab as a composer/lyricist, or as a team of composer and lyricist.)

The Musical Theatre Song Lab is $395 ($595 for composer/lyricist combination)

Register for the musical theatre song lab