Give a Classic Novel a Modern Soundtrack

In this lesson, students take inspiration from Baz Lurhmann’s new adaptation of The Great Gatsby to create a modern soundtrack for a classic novel.


Some media may contain mature content. Discretion is advised when viewing with students.

Lesson Plan

Baz Luhrmann is famous for giving classic stories a modern twist. In his newest adaptation of The Great Gatsby, he uses an entirely modern soundtrack that features music from Jay-Z, Beyonce, Andre 300, and Will.I.Am. While the story may take place in the 1920s, the soundtrack features almost entirely new pop songs.

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Lesson tags: Eighth, Eleventh, English, Film, Music, Ninth, Tenth

Cassie Brown

Cassie Brown Cassie Brown is an award-winning playwright and performer as well as an experienced educator. Cassie currently teaches enrichment classes in magic, model airplane building, and outdoor adventure skills. She has a degree in Early Childhood Development in addition to a Bachelor's in Film Studies with a minor in Education. Cassie honed her understanding of student-centered education while at Sesame Street, where she spent years learning the value of combining entertainment with education.