Yale Opens Online Course in Music and Social Action

Screenshot 2016-02-29 11.59.51


The Yale School of Music is pleased to announce the launch of its first massive open online course (MOOC), “Music and Social Action.” Taught by MacArthur Fellow Sebastian Ruth, the course asks vital questions about musicians’ responses to the condition of the world.

Sebastian Ruth is the founder and artistic director of Community MusicWorks, a nationally-recognized organization that connects professional musicians with urban youth and families in Providence, Rhode Island. It has been hailed as a “revolutionary organization” by the New Yorker and in 2010 received the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, conferred by First Lady Michelle Obama.

Ruth has received a “genius” grant from the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship for “creating rewarding musical experiences for often-forgotten populations and forging a new, multifaceted role beyond the concert hall for the twenty-first-century musician.” Community MusicWorks was the inspiration for New Haven’s own Music Haven, which provides free instruments, lessons, classes, and ensemble and leadership development opportunities to young people (ages 6–18) from low-income New Haven neighborhoods.

Sebastian Ruth’s free online course offers students around the world an opportunity to learn from this leading educator and thinker. The multimedia course includes not only thoughtfully crafted lectures and engaging assignments but also historical photos and audio clips.

The course asks vital questions such as: Do musicians have an obligation and an opportunity to serve the needs of the world with their musicianship? Are we looking at a dying art form or a moment of re-invigoration? The course itself, as well as the impact of organizations such as Community MusicWorks and Music Haven, argues the case for re-invigoration.



The next session opens March 21.  Register here: Coursera


Leave a Reply