School navigation

Overseas and Off-Campus Programs

England London (Music)

Semester: Spring
Offered: Even years
Date: Mid-January to mid-April
Program Focus: General Culture with a Music/Theater/Art emphasis and
internship experience.


MUS 104 or equivalent is required. Minimum of 2.75 GPA is highly recommended.
Spring 2016
Program Leader:
Michael Johanson
Associate Professor of Music, Director of Composition and Music Theory
ext. 7468
Spring 2018
Program Leader:

Susan DeWitt Smith

Associate Professor of Music, Director of Piano, Theory Coordinator

Evans Center 12

ext. 7459

Spring 2020

Program Leader:

Lance Inouye

Assistant Professor of Music, Director of Orchestral Activities

ext. 7608


Program Design:

This program is designed by the Music Department and focuses on the arts in England, especially in London, and the relationship of music, theater, and the visual arts to English culture.  In addition to attending weekly concerts, plays, and visiting galleries and museums, students will embrace social and economic questions related to the arts through classes, lectures and group discussions.  The program is open to any student, but those with well-defined interests and experience with one of the arts will benefit the most.  Binding us together will be a consideration of how the arts reflect our conditions (past and present), including aspects of political and economic environments, and issues of corporate, private and government sponsorship.  Although the program focuses on the London arts scene, the program takes weekend field trips to such sites as St. Ives (St. Ives Tate Gallery), Bath, York, and Cambridge.  At least one longer weekend field trip is taken outside of England to Scotland or Wales.

Requirements Fulfilled:
IS 241 and 250 fulfill the 8-credit International Studies general education requirement.

4 courses per semester/16 credits


IS 241: Contemporary England

Britain is at a crossroads politically, socially and culturally.  This course attempts to come to terms with the legacy of Britain’s imperial past and simultaneously analyzing contemporary Britain in the light of the challenges that the country faces from a variety of political, economic and cultural sources. Key features for analysis will include: Britain’s traditional political institutions and the process of reform; the importance of social class, race and ethnicity; ‘popular culture’ v ‘high culture’. In addition, understanding the urban experience will play a central role in the course.

IS 250: The Fine Arts in Contemporary London

Focusing on the visual arts, this course asks provocative questions (e.g., What is Art?), and seeks to explore answers through lectures, discussions, and visits to prominent galleries and museums, including the British Museum, National Gallery, the Tate and Tate Modern and other sites. Other topics include arts funding, arts education, and performances and issues in the fine arts in areas not covered by the music and theatre courses.  A large component of this course is a required individual experiential learning project in one area of the arts.  These take the form of practicums, private study/performance, or research projects.

MUS 362: Topics in Music and History

This course provides opportunities for study of an area of music history plus an overview of classical music in various London venues, including chamber music, symphony orchestras, opera, choral groups and solo recitals.  Weekly attendance at concerts, both as a group and individually, augments the academic coursework.  This class fulfills a music major requirement.

TH 251: Theatre in London

This course provides an overview of London theatre offerings, in a variety of idioms including fringe, regional companies and the West End. It also includes an historical overview of British theatre traditions.  All aspects of theatre (acting, directing, playwriting, design and funding) are discussed. Weekly attendance at performances is supplemented by field trips.

Relationship to On-Campus Curriculum:
This program is of great benefit to students with a strong background or interest in one or more of the fine arts.  Arts immersion, especially in music or theatre, in what many consider the world’s capital of the arts offers a depth of experience and opportunity for comparisons far beyond what we can replicate on campus or in Portland.  These students return to campus with a wealth of new ideas, increased skills, and critical perspectives that often become an integral part of the success of their senior projects or upper division study.  In addition, because of the overlap in themes in the London curriculum, all students are able to study and compare various art forms as a cohort in a way that is not possible with a more typical Lewis & Clark students’ course schedule.

Program Design



England, London

51.507351; -0.127758