Theater History & Happy Hour

Theater History & Happy Hour

Theater History and Happy Hour is MTH’s first ever online educational series for adults, created for community members from 21-99+ years old who have a love for musical theater!

Each course is led by MTH Founder George Harter and consists of a 6-week session that begins with casual conversation and Happy (half) Hour featuring a carefully curated menu of 6 different cocktails, suitable to each session. Join us for musical theater fun in an environment where everyone belongs!

$200 includes the entire 6-week session with MTH Founder George Harter,  joined by MTH Executive Artistic Director Tim Scott. Also INCLUDED is a snazzy MTH T-shirt, your curated cocktail card, as well as your “Class Card” highlighting the subject matter for each session!

Add the Happy Hour bundle ($50) for a carefully curated selection of 6 signature cocktails (delivered to your door!), one for each course. Whether it be a Manhattan to celebrate Cole Porter or a special concoction George would like to share based on his decades long relationship with Broadway and the Great White Way, each class will begin with a virtual Happy Hour of casual conversation and fellowship.

These courses will be conducted via ZOOM. Once enrolled, we will contact you with instructions and a zoom link so you can participate in all the fun!

History of the American Musical Theater

6 Tuesdays, starting August 3 — $200
Led by MTH founder George Harter, this comprehensive course will chronicle the history of the American musical, including early influences from operetta and vaudeville to depression era Hollywood films that nearly killed the live stage musical to a new era of musical theater that began with OKLAHOMA!, and concluding with the winds of change brought about by Stephen Sondheim and beyond. This virtual course will feature multi-media presentations that include archival sound clips, video footage, and historical photographs. All enjoyed from the comfort and safety of your home!
Tuesday, August 4: 6-8pm
Tuesday, August 11: 6-8pm
Tuesday, August 18: 6-8pm
Tuesday, August 25: 6-8pm
Tuesday, September 1: 6-8pm
Tuesday, September 8: 6-8pm

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The Songwriters

6 Thursdays, starting August 6 — $200
Led by MTH founder George Harter, this comprehensive course highlights the great songwriters of the American musical. Each of the six sessions will focus on a titan of Broadway and offer insight into the process, music, and background of each of the individuals. The featured songwriters include: Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, George and Ira Gershwin, Stephen Sondheim, Lerner and Loewe, and Rodgers and Hammerstein. This virtual course will feature multi-media presentations that include archival sound clips, video footage, and historical photographs. All enjoyed from the comfort and safety of your home!
Thursday, August 6: 6-8pm
Thursday, August 13: 6-8pm
Thursday, August 20: 6-8pm
Thursday, August 27: 6-8pm
Thursday, September 3: 6-8pm
Thursday, September 10: 6-8pm

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About Your Instructor

George’s radio career began in 1976 as a late night Jazz host on Kansas City’s KCUR-FM, and later serving as staff producer of the new Morning Edition in 1978.

In 1980 George took a weekend announcers job on KXTR, Kansas City’s commercial classical station. While there he started playing Broadway show music & film scores on Saturday nights. As George’s programming became more and more popular, he named his evenings on the air: A Night on the Town.

It became the top-rated show on the station and the most listened to Saturday night radio program in the Kansas City area.

In 1997 he founded Musical Theater Heritage as a vehicle to launch A Night on the Town into national syndication through the WFMT Fine Arts Network. By 2002 the show was heard on 113 stations in the United States and in several European countries.

Over the years George has written, hosted and co-produced many original shows for MTH, including: Bernstein’s Broadway, Wouldn’t It Be Loverly, An Evening with Cole Porter, An Evening with George Gershwin, Songs of the Great War, Broadway’s Golden Age, Big Bands Are Better, as well as several of MTH’s early Christmas Shows and a revue of the songs of Jacques Brel.

George also has written and hosted Broadway themed programs for the Kansas City Symphony.

In additional to serving as the MTH Executive Director, he and Beth Ingram launched the very popular New York & Broadway theater trips in 1996.

George Harter retired in 2016 but continues to plan and lead the Broadway theater trips, give show talks and act as MTH’s resident Musical Theater historian.