War, Suffrage, and Temperance: 1910s

Presenter: Robert Butts, PhD

World War I was the dominant world event of the decade.  By 1920, the United States had become the major world power while European countries such as Germany and France were devastated.  The Bolshevik Revolution in Russia overthrew the Czar and created a whole new social entity – The Soviet Union.  By 1920, two U.S. Constitutional amendments changed the face of society:  Women’s Suffrage and Prohibition.  Broadway became the stage from which recording artists such as Al Jolson became international stars.  Songwriters like Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern and George Gershwin began their careers with the first songs which have come to be called “The Great American Songbook”.  Jazz moved from New Orleans up the Mississippi River, gradually becoming a major style of American music that became an international sensation.  Modernism in music caused riots at performances of music by Arnold Schoenberg and Igor Stravinsky.  Popular songs became even more dominant and record companies explored new sources of musical creativity in the blues, African American music and rural American folk music.

Dr. Robert W. Butts serves as Music Director and Conductor with the Baroque Orchestra of New Jersey and The New York Classical Music society.  He teaches at The Casperson School of Graduate Studies at Drew University and at Montclair State University.  As a composer, Dr. Butts has created popular works for orchestra, voice and chamber ensembles.

“Grant Funding has been provided by the Middlesex County Board of County Commissioners 

         Through a grant award from the Middlesex County Cultural and Arts Trust Fund.”


This program is co-sponsored by The Jewish Federation in the Heart of New Jersey.


REGISTRATION FEE:  $8/JCCMC Member; $11/Non-member

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