writing musical theatre - ONLINE

Online Courses in the craft of musical theatre

ANMT hosts a variety of online courses on the craft of musical theatre.  Online video lectures, tests, and exercises are enhanced by one-on-one feedback with professional evaluators.  All courses can be taken whenever and wherever you want.

(NOTE: If you are planning to take the Core Curriculum, the labs for Book, Music, and Lyrics are offered at a discounted price.  Check in with academy@anmt.org for details on how to claim your discount.)

The Academy Repertory Company in concert at the Cabarabia Fundraiser.


The Book Lab is designed as an introduction to writing the book of a musical while also outlining the collaborative steps involved in creating a new musical with the whole team. The book of a musical is not just the spoken words, but encompasses the entire story of the musical. The collaborative process is explored through six units including: THE IDEA, THE OUTLINE, THE ROUGH DRAFT, ADDING SONGS, REVISIONS, and FINISHING TOUCHES.

This course qualifies as the Book Lab element of the Academy for New Musical Theatre's Core Curriculum.


In this practical lab, you will be lead step-by-step through the process of developing a musical idea from concept through to a working outline, with detailed constructive feedback along the way from your evaluator. By the end of this ten-unit course, you should have a well-developed and detailed outline that will solidly prepare you for the collaborative task of writing your new musical.

The Academy Repertory Company in concert at the Cabarabia Fundraiser.


Whether you're a veteran looking to sharpen some aspects of your craft, or whether you're new to writing lyrics for musical theatre, the Lyric Labs course can help you focus your lyrics and give them impact and drama. The basic Lyric Lab is the place to start - but advanced Labs and smaller Lab modules are also offered:

    Lyric Lab

    Advanced Lyric Lab

    Metaphor Lab

    Prosody Lab

    The Verse, Chorus and Refrain Lab

The Lyric Lab qualifies as the Lyric Lab element of the Academy for New Musical Theatre's Core Curriculum.

The Academy Repertory Company in concert at the Cabarabia Fundraiser.


Videos, tests, exercises and interactive assignments on the craft of composing for musical theatre, from Columbia College professor Philip Seward. Topics include: setting a lyric, creating a piano arrangement, finding a rhythm in a lyric and using it to develop a melody, creating a lead sheet, working with a hook, key signatures & accidentals, driving melodically toward the climax of the song, supporting the melody, when to modulate, composing incidental music, composing for the music theatre voice, formatting a score, swing notation, integrating script and score, and lots more.

The Music Lab is designed to address the specifics of composition for the musical theatre and is not intended to be a basic course in general music composition. A successful student will begin the lab with a basic knowledge of music theory including an understanding of common tonal progressions. A music notation software will be necessary to complete and submit assignments. The best options for notation software are Finale or Sibelius, though other programs may be used as well.

This course qualifies as the Music Lab element of the Academy for New Musical Theatre's Core Curriculum.

For more info on online courses, please visit our sister site:

OR give us a CALL at 818-506-8500

Format Guidelines

Want to make sure your musical is professional formatted?  ANMT offers detailed instructions for professional formatting of musical theatre scripts and scores.

Check it out at the ONLINE STORE.

Theatre Producers Academy

ANMT recommends the online Theatre Producers Academy where you will find out how to produce plays and musicals without losing your shirt - or your sanity! Whether you’re a playwright thinking about producing your own material, a member of an acting company, or just someone who loves theatre, and wants to produce plays and musicals that enlighten, entertain and inspire audiences, you recognize that you’re looking at a major undertaking, and you need to learn the art, the business, and the process of producing live theatre.

Check it out at the Theatre Producers Academy.

Monthly Email for Musical Theatre Lovers

Want to receive a monthly email with fun tidbits of information from the past, present, and future of the musical theatre world AND support the organization committed to preserving this uniquely American art form? 

Subscribe to the Musical Theatre Preservation Fund.

Do you live in the Los Angeles area?

If you live in the Los Angeles area, you might want to join our active community of bookwriters, lyricists and composers through our Writers' Workshops. 

Check it out at the Writers' Workshop Page.

QUESTIONS?  Email us at academy@anmt.org

OR give us a CALL at 818-506-8500


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