With over 300 courses available, there’s something for everyone, from learning practical skills such as a foreign language or in an art or writing program, to discovering more about the world of the past in one of our many history courses. Our IT courses have a terrific range for those who need to brush up on their computer skills, manage a small business, keep up with the kids or web design. Learn to be a better manager, gain training qualifications, become a master public speaker – all in our Business and Training program.

Don’t miss out – join one of WEA’s Spring 2016 courses, and discover the value and quality that have kept WEA going through the 100 years of its existence in Sydney. With over 15,000 students enrolling each year, WEA represents success, interest, involvement, friendship, social outlets, health, community, all packaged with the best tutors in Sydney!

Enjoy your Spring at WEA!

Michael Newton | Executive Director

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      • Demystifying 20th Century Classical Music

        Listeners of classical music often find 20th century music difficult and demanding. The century spans the end of Romanticism, Atonalism, neo-Classicalism, Chance Music, Electronic Music and Minimalism to name a few. Each of these new musical ideas was a reaction by composers against the status quo. This series tries to demystify this music by putting it into a historical and sociological context, looking at the World Wars, the rise of Communism, Nazism and the Cold War. Understanding ‘how’ and ‘why’ composers wrote as they did, helps to better comprehend the music from this complex period in history.


        • 1900-1914 – the 20th century inherited a musical language ready to collapse. Many older composers continued to compose in the style of the late Romantics while others wanted to explore new musical horizons.
        • World War I and its aftermath – there is a Russian saying that “when the guns talk, the muses fall silent”. This was definitely the case during WWI but what happened after the war?
        • Communism, Fascism and Democracy – How did music change in Communist Russia, Fascist Germany and Democratic America between the wars?
        • World War II – WWII was the first conflict to take place in the age of mass electronic communication. How did music on the radio and live performances affect both the soldiers fighting in the war and on the home front? What has been WW2’s legacy musically?
        • Music during the Cold War – After the war a massive split occurred in the musical world. Groups of composers and musicians alienated themselves from the rest of the music making and concert going communities. What were the consequences of this?
        • 1970’s to the present day – This period has been called the “Age of Convergence” where there is no dominant musical form but an ever increasing pallet of musical ideas for composers to work.

        By the end of this course, students should be able to:

        1. Identify the key events of the 20th century from a Classical Music perspective.
        2. Explain how these events impacted on the music from this period.
        3. Discuss various different musical genres on the 20th century.
      • Germany, France and The American Challenge after the World Wars

        The French journalist and politician Jean-Jacques Servan Schreiber warned in his 1967 bestseller Le Défi Américain (The American Challenge) that Europe, facing an overwhelming penetration of American goods, services and ideas, could become merely an economic colony of the United States. ‘American Challenge’ became also a slogan. This course will take a closer look at America’s cultural and economic influence on Germany and France after the First and Second World War.

        Using multimedia tools, we will explore and discuss America’s literature, music, Hollywood films and consumer goods, such as American cars, Coca Cola and refrigerators. We will embark on a journey to the ‘Crazy Years’ in France. In the 1920s Paris was A Feast for Life for Hemingway and the other Americans of the ‘Lost Generation’ in France. Berlin also conducted a love affair with all things American, attempting to model itself as Europe’s most modern city. There was Jazz in Berlin’s nightlife, also visits from Josephine Baker and Charlie Chaplin, and the popularity of the Bubikopf (bob) for the so-called ‘modern woman’. After 1945 occupied Germany and liberated France reacted in a different way to the American economic and cultural ‘invasion’.


        • Hemingway, Ernest, A Moveable Feast (New York: Scribner, 2010);
        • Kuisel, Richard F., Seducing the French (Berkeley: Univ. of California, 1993);
        • Nolan, Mary, The Transatlantic Century: Europe and America 1890-2010 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010)
        • Weitz, Erich D., Weimar Germany: Promise and Tragedy (Princeton Univ., 2007).


        • The Interwar Years:
        • The ‘Lost Generation’ in the 1920s in the ‘City of Light’, Paris:
        • Ernest Hemingway, Scott Fitzgerald and Josephine Baker, Man Ray etc. America’s influence on Weimar Germany in the 1920s.
        • Jazz and Hollywood movies, as well as the American economic policy – such as the Dawes and Young plans in 1924 and 1929 are further topics.
        • The German – American relationship in occupied Germany, and the different approach in liberated France under de Gaulle to the American Challenge will then be investigated and discussed.
        • Review: Were Germany and France ‘Americanized’ in the 20th century?

        By the end of this course, students should be able to:

        1. Develop a better understanding of the transatlantic relationship between Germany, France and the United States after both World Wars.
        2. Understand America’s role and importance on Europe in the 20th century.
        3. Gain an awareness of the variety of ways historians approach the past.
      • Photography Intensive Workshop: Developing Creativity

        Learn how to previsualise your images and experiment in visually interpreting your selected subject or scene. You will study composition and natural light as well as the different considerations required for understanding how to produce successful colour, B&W and various subject matter. This 2 day workshop is for students who know the basics of operating their camera in Aperture and Shutter Speed Prioriy modes. Classroom notes and slides will be combined with practical exercises.

        Bring your camera, camera manual (or handbook equivalent eg “Dummies” edition of your camera’s model), memory card, fully charged battery, notebook and pen. Printed notes will be distributed.

        Note: You must know the basics of operating your camera in both Aperture Priority & Shutter Speed Priority modes before enrolment.

        Day 1

        • Revision of technical skills.
        • Examining the use of composition to add interest.
        • Using natural light successfully.
        • Evaluating an image for aesthetic appeal and balance.
        • Practical creative exercises in Hyde Park (weather permitting).

        Day 2

        • Revision & review of images from practical.
        • Experimenting with colour creatively.
        • Understanding tonal shift for B&W photography.
        • Obtaining contrast control for impact.
        • Tips for shooting different subject matter.

        By the end of this course, students should be able to:

        1. Creatively assess a scene and different subject matter.
        2. Apply learnt skills to capture your creative vision.
        3. Understand the different elements required when shooting in colour and B&W.
        4. Experiment with compositional elements.
        5. Evaluate an image for aesthetic appeal and balance.
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