Hallelujah Handel, Beethoven Lives Upstairs, Mozart's Magical Fantasy, Tchaikovsky Discovers America, and other Classical Kids CDs or audiobooks are wonderful resources to teach classical music in context of a story.
The Classical Kids CDs (MP3s, or streamlined tracks) - are excellent and we are big fans to the whole series and recommend them to others. We have learned a lot from them.
The music is beautiful and the production is very well done.
However, some parts of the storyline are not always appropriate for young children. In Hallelujah Handel , there are some parts which may frighten little ones.
Handel's music in Hallelujah Handel is, of course, grand and beautiful - but perhaps alongside any of these Classical CDs, you may like to choose several good books to read about Handel's real life.
Mr Bach Comes to Call - It is so meaningful to learn about the composer of the music you are listening to. We loved Bach and appreciate that he was a family man.
Out of all the Classical Kids CDs - we love Beethoven lives Upstairs. The storyline is about Beethoven's last years, with a well-written narrative.
Mozart's Magic Fantasy - Audiobook on CD
The Story: With magic bells and flute, Sarah and the dragon find their way from the Queen of the Night's realm to Sarastro's castle. Together they help Prince Tamino find Princess Pamina and the bird-man Papageno find his Papagena. The Music: Features Mozart's best known arias, originally translated and freshly recorded with child-appropriate verse. Lyrics enclosed.
Hallelujah Handel - Audiobook on CD
In 1750, George Frideric Handel gave musical history's greatest gift - his Messiah - to an orphanage in London. From that city's dark lanes comes Thomas, a boy who sings like an angel but will not speak. Finally the boy is healed with the help of Maestro Handel, Katarina (from Vivaldi's Ring Of Mystery) and the power and glory of the music. Includes more than two dozens excerpts of Handel's music, including the Sarabande in D minor, Water Music, Music for the Royal Fireworks, Arrival of the Queen of Sheba, Harp Concerto, oratorios, operas, and of course, Messiah.
Beethoven Lives Upstairs - Audiobook on CD
In this tale of genius and childhood, an eccentric new boarder turns a young boy's life upside-down. Ludwig Van Beethoven has moved in upstairs! Young Christoph exchanges letters about the chaotic arrival of Mr. Beethoven and learns to appreciate and understand the great composer and his music. The CD features over two dozen excerpts from Beethoven's music including the Moonlight Sonata, Symphonies #5-9, Fur Elise, Pathetique Sonata, Flute Serenade, and Minuet in G Major.
Tchaikovsky Discovers America - Audiobook on CD
Tchaikovsky arrives in New York for the grand opening of Carnegie Hall in 1891. It's all aboard for a fun-filled musical adventure to Niagara Falls. During his trip, the great composer shares stories with a young family about his music, his life and his fear of conducting. In the end, both the composer and the family discover something about courage and about themselves. Includes more than two dozen excerpts of Tchaikovsky's music, including The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake, The First Piano Concerto, String Serenade and 1812 Overture. Also included is a musical mosaic of well-known American music of the time, including ragtime, spirituals and popular folk classics.
Vivaldi's Ring of Mystery - Audiobook on CD
Vivaldi spent part of his life as the music director in an orphanage in Venice. The story on this cassette focuses on the life of a fictitious character, Katarina, who enters the orphanage with many questions about her past, an intriguing mystery to her. When she accidentally drops and breaks a Stradivarius violin, she feels compelled to break some of the rules of the orphanage to have it repaired. She ventures out at night onto the gloomy canals of Venice with the hlep of Giovanni, the gondolier. We pick up clues to the mystery of her past along the way as two dozen exerpts of Vivaldi's compositions flow throughout the scenes.
Mr. Bach Comes to Call - Audiobook on CD
The Story: After the dramatic send-off of his music into space about Voyager II, Mr. Bach, along with his magic orchestra and choir, drops in on a little girl as she practices piano. The Music: Over 2 dozen excerpts, including Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, Brandenburg Concerto #5, Flute Sonatas and Badinerie, Air for the G-String, Goldberg Variations, piano minuet and preludes, organ music and Choral Cantata #78
Another musical series which also offers the beautiful music alongside a storyline is the Maestro Classics. The Maestro Classics 12 CD Set includes all 12 CDs from the award-winning Stories in Music series. Each CD contains a 24-page activity book.
Includes: Peter the Wolf, The Nutcracker (featuring Jim Weiss), The Story of Swan Lake, Carnival of the Animals, My Name is Handel: The Story of Water Music, Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, The Tortoise and the Hare, Merry Pranks of Master Till, Casey at the Bat, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, The Soldier’s Tale and Juanita the Spanish Lobster (in English).
All CDs feature The London Philharmonic Orchestra with conductor Stephen Simon, special guest artists, narrators and music by the following composers: Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Stravinsky, Camille Saint-Saëns, George Frideric Handel, Richard Strauss, Paul Dukas, David Haslam and Stephen Simon.
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As a family we have "grown up" with these wonderful CDs. The children (and I) have really enjoyed listening to the creative stories intertwined with the …