Top 5 Current TV Shows Bringing Awareness to Music Education

Music involvement is a fundamental component of human nature. We are introduced to it at infancy, and it plays a huge part in our every day lives. As stated in numerous reports, music education helps children develop discipline, teamwork skills, and communication skills. These abilities are considered valuable tools once in the workforce. The amazing thing about the arts, music, and music education is that absolutely anyone can participate in it, and everyone can benefit from it.

In recent years, Hollywood has brought awareness to this, showing the value of music education, through reality shows and prime-time dramas. Here are the top 5 recent shows that promote an appreciation for the arts and music education:

1.     Smash

Starring big names such as Debra Messing and Anjelica Huston, this new NBC drama centers on the story of what goes on behind the scenes of making a Broadway stage production.  Smash also stars American Idolalumna Katharine McPhee and real-life Broadway actress Megan Hilty, as two young woman trying to achieve their dreams and battling it out to be the next Marilyn Monroe in “Marilyn- The Musical.” The challenges of reaching goals and fulfilling dreams have been prominent themes throughout the episodes that have aired so far.

2.     The Voice

First premiering in April 2011, The Voice on NBC is an innovatively formatted reality show that celebrates true vocal talent. It features three stages of competition; the blind audition, a battle phase, and the live performance show. During the blind auditions, contestants sing while four musician coaches sit with their backs to them. The coaches hear the artists perform, but they don’t get to see the artist. However if a coach is impressed by the artist’s voice, they can push a button to turn their chair around, which is an invitation for that artist to be coached by them. The show is unique in that it accurately shows that musical talent can come from anyone, and not just those that “look the part.”

3.     Glee

Originally intended to be a film, then a miniseries in 2009, Glee is a musical comedy-drama airing on Fox, that focuses on  high school glee club New Directions competing on the show choir competition circuit, while its members deal with relationships, sexuality and social issues.  The show has extended to live concerts, appearances by cast members, and a concert-film. Glee episodes actively shed light on music education, and portray the challenges that public schools face in regard to music and art programs.

4.     America’s Got Talent

Introduced in 2006, America’s Got Talent is a weekly talent competition on NBC where an array of performers — from singers and dancers, to comedians and novelty acts — vie for a $1 million cash prize. The show is part of the British Got Talent Franchise. Created by Simon Cowell (most commonly known as a former American Idol judge), America’s Got Talentgives an opportunity for amateurs or unknown performers to break into the entertainment or music industry.

5.     American Idol

In this Fox reality show developed in 2002, potential artists compete in a talent contest in which they were asked to sing any song they like as an audition piece.  From there, they are either invited to continue as a finalist in the competition or are sent home. The finalist’s song choices are critiqued by 3 judges, and after each show’s ending, America must vote for a finalist to whom they really think their performance is good using their cell phone to cast votes with. Once the votes are locked in, the judges and America decides who has the most and the least amount of votes, and the contestant with the least amount of votes is eliminated, and it goes on each week’s show until the winner is crowned as “American Idol.” At that time, the winner receives a recording contract worth up to $1,000,000. Other contestants besides the final winner frequently receive recording contracts as well. American Idol has produced artists such as Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Hicks, Katharine McPhee and many other talented individuals.