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Rainbow Lifelong Learning Institute, Boston

Our Classes

Introduction to Classical Music: For the Confused, Perplexed or Already Converted


with Liz Diamond

Calendar Sep 8, 2020 at 10:30 am, runs for 10 weeks

Schedule: This course will take place on Tuesdays at 10:30 AM for 10 weeks starting in Session I (9/8/20 - 10/6/20) and continuing through Session II (10/20/20 - 11/17/20). No class will be held on 10/13/20.

Course Description:

Classical music will be explored from two vantage points: The Elements of Music (Melody, Rhythm, Harmony, Tonal Color, Form) and Music History (with a focus on Baroque, Classical and Romantic periods), learning some major characteristics of each period via listening to some of the greatest music ever written. The HOW of listening to classical music for maximum enjoyment will be discussed. You will receive a list of supplemental pieces to listen to, online videos and books. Questions and comments are encouraged.

Enrollment Limit: None

Course Leader: Liz Diamond

Liz received her BA from BU (Concentration: Music), and a Masters from Lesley College in Education/Arts. She took piano lessons for a few years, flute lessons for lots of years, played flute in band and orchestra, is self-taught on guitar, and  taught music K-8 in the Salem (MA) Public Schools. She created Women’s Educational Media, Inc. 1978-82 and produced lesbian educational outreach materials: Straight Talk About Lesbians (filmstrip), The Lesbian Primer, and produced the video And We Are Family, distributed to universities and non-profit organizations nationally….Liz happily represented Steinway pianos at M. Steinert & Sons in Boston for fifteen years. She misses live classical concerts and docenting for WGBH! Passions include learning Bach fugues on piano, photography, children, and walking with friends in beautiful places. 

Write on Zoom! A Prose Writing Workshop


with Sue Katz

Calendar Sep 8, 2020 at 1 pm, runs for 5 weeks

Schedule: This course will take place on Tuesdays at 1:00 PM for 5 weeks during Session I (9/8/20 - 10/6/20).

Course Description:

This class will be for a small group of prose writers who want to take their work to the next level. A variety of approaches to writing and feedback will be used, starting with a short warm-up exercise. Then a longer chunk of time will be devoted to focusing on a piece of writing. For this you can either select from the three varied prompts (as many as you choose) the instructor will provide or you can concentrate on an ongoing piece of writing (book/essay/story/etc.) that you have been working on outside or inside class. Finally, volunteers will read up to 500 words of their work, and we will offer feedback.

Enrollment Limit: 8

Course Leader: Sue Katz

Sue Katz’s business card identifies her as a “wordsmith and rebel.” Her books, short stories, and journalism have been published on the three continents where she has lived and worked, first as a martial arts master, then promoting transnational volunteering, and before the pandemic, teaching fitness and dance to elders. She has taught a plethora of varied writing courses. Her books include Lillian’s Last Affair (six short stories about the love lives of older people), Lillian in Love (novel about a romance between two old women in senior housing), and A Raisin in My Cleavage: short and shorter stories (LGBTQ and aging).

Full Course

Night Flyers: Contemporary Women Playwrights


with Jyl Lynn Felman

Calendar Sep 8, 2020 at 3 pm, runs for 10 weeks

Schedule: This course will take place on Tuesdays at 3:00 PM for 10 weeks starting in Session I (9/8/20 - 10/6/20) and continuing through Session II (10/20/20 - 11/17/20). No class will be held on 10/13/20.

Course Description:

The course will include discussion and reading out loud sections of the plays assigned for the week. One play a week or a play over two weeks will be read, depending on the length. Six terrific women playwrights who cross literary boundaries will be read, including Jen Silverman, Marsha Norman, Margaret Edson and Paula Vogel. With brilliant language and cutting edge scripts on taboo topics these plays will astound you. The intersecting lens of race, class, gender, and sexuality will be used to unravel these amazing works.

Reading List:

Plays to be read are available on Amazon and/or used book sites, and local libraries:

  • “Still,” by Jen Silverman
  • “Cost of Living,” by Martyna Majok
  • “’night, Mother,” by Marsha Norman
  • “How I Learned to Drive,” by Paula Vogel
  • “Wit,” by Margaret Edson
  • “The White Card,” by Claudia Rankin
  • “Pipeline,” by Dominique Morisseau

To prepare for the first class:

Please read “How I Learned to Drive,” by Paula Vogel.

Enrollment Limit: 16

Course Leader: Jyl Lynn Felman

Jyl Lynn Felman is a playwright, writer and performance artist. She is the author of HOT CHICKEN WINGS, a collection of short stories; CRAVINGS, a memoir, and NEVER A DULL MOMENT: TEACHING AND THE ART OF PERFORMANCE. She’s performed her one-woman shows, TERRI SCHIAVO, INC., BURNING IN CUBA, and SILICONE VALLEY across the USA plus Prague, Czech Republic and Havana, Cuba. IF ONLY I’D BEEN BORN A KOSHER CHICKEN aired on C-SPAN’s performance series. Productions of her plays include OH DADDY, POOR DADDY in The Seven Deadly Sins Festival, Concord, NH, and BIRDIE in The Universal Theatre Festival, Provincetown, MA.

Heterosexism, Anti-Jewish Oppression, and Other Forms of Oppression: Making the Links


with Warren Blumenfeld

Calendar Oct 20, 2020 at 1 pm, runs for 5 weeks

Schedule: This course will take place on Tuesdays at 1:00 PM for five weeks during Session II (10/20/20 - 11/17/20).

Course Description:

Throughout history, many dominant groups have depicted or represented minoritized groups in a variety of negative ways for the purpose of maintaining control or mastery. The representation of targeted groups is expressed through myths and stereotypes in proverbs, social commentary, literature, jokes, epithets, pictorial depictions, and other cultural forms. This presentation makes the clear and stunning connections between historical representations of Jewish people and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans (LGBT) people, and asks participants to make these connections with other forms of oppression.

Students will be required to read:

  • Article: Blumenfeld, Warren J. (1996). “History/Hysteria: Parallel Representations of Jews and Gays, Lesbians, and Bisexuals.” in Queer Studies: A Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Anthology, Brett Beemyn and Mickey Eliason (Eds.). New York: New York University Press.
  • All readings are available electronically from the Course Leader.

Enrollment Limit: None

Course Leader: Warren Blumenfeld

Warren holds a Doctorate degree in Social Justice Education, Masters in Special Education, BA in Sociology & Music. Visiting Assistant Professor, Educational Studies, Colgate University (2001-2004); Associate Professor, Iowa State University, School of Education (2004 – 2013); Instructor, College of Education, University of Massachusetts Amherst (2013-present).

Author of The What, The So What, and the Now What of Social Justice Education (Peter Lang Publishers), Warren’s Words: Smart Commentary on Social Justice (Purple Press); editor of Homophobia: How We All Pay the Price (Beacon Press), co-author of Looking at Gay and Lesbian Life (Beacon Press), and co-editor of Readings for Diversity and Social Justice (Routledge) and Investigating Christian Privilege and Religious Oppression in the United States (Sense).

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