By RENATO GANDIA
June 13, 2010
Hey Jude, James Istvanffy is having a hard day's night choosing his
top song by The Beatles.
But he's willing to give a little help to his friends in a continuing
education course exploring the Fab Four at the University of Calgary this fall.
Simply titled The Beatles, the course is a multi-media-interactive
examination of the music and lyrics of the Fab Four.
"They're the greatest rock band of the last 100 years, and they've
affected millions of people so profoundly," said Istvanffy who will
be teaching the course with his brother Robert Istvanffy.
The course will engage students to enjoy and discuss the beautiful
and sublime aspects of the band's performances and history, examining
its impact on the culture of the 1960s and perhaps, across the universe.
Istvanffy said what they're going to teach is a music appreciation
course highlighting Beatles songs that helped shape an era.
"It's meant to be fun, so there won't be any test at the end of the
course, it's all about appreciation and learning for pleasure."
Istvanffy also teaches military history and most of his students are
male but for this one he expects more Michelles will enrol.
He also expects the students to be a wide variety of ages from the
early 20s to 60s and he's basing that on a 2009 survey that said
people in that age bracket listen to rock-and-roll music and their
top choice for a band is The Beatles.
For at least three decades, the Istvanffy brothers have been a fan of
the group, which officially disbanded in 1970.
"We've been talking about The Beatles for 30 years and we're very
enthusiastic Beatles fans," said Istvanffy, who was very young when
the band broke up.
"No one can predict the future, but I doubt there'll be another group
Serious observers of culture say the group struck just as youth in
western countries began rebelling against post-war social stagnation
"There was a need to talk about the important issues and they wrote
songs about them, that's why they have profoundly affected culture,"
In the 1960s, people listened to a lot of the same songs, and watched
the same shows, he said a time not to be repeated in an era of mass
communication and digital diversity.
The course will begin Sept. 28 and if you want to know a secret check
out http://conted.ucalgary.ca and you never know there may still be
some strawberry fields to explore.