Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Music Tip # 20 Do you Listen to Classical Music?

My teenage piano student came to lessons yesterday. He had decided he wanted to learn some “classical music”. Great, I thought. This will be fun. I immediately started playing Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata and asked if he had ever heard it before. “No,” he replied. “Are you sure you haven’t heard this piece before?” I inquired as I continued to play. “Nope. Never,” he answered assuredly, “but I like it.” I was so surprised my student had not heard Moonlight Sonata before. Doesn’t everyone know that piece of music?

When I was in 4th and 5th grade the Phoenix Symphony sponsored a program for all elementary age students. They chose several pieces of classical music and gave the repertoire list to the music teachers. Throughout the next several months, the teachers played the music and taught about the pieces. Then a test was given to the students. Musical passages from the repertoire music were played and the students wrote down the title of the piece. If you had enough answers correct you received either a silver or gold certificate and were bussed to ASU’s Grady Gammage to hear a live concert of the Phoenix Symphony playing the pieces.

I still love the music I learned from those two years. Debussy’s Afternoon of a Faun and Clair de lune, and

The Grand Canyon Suite by Grofe are a few of my favorites. The Phoenix Symphony still continues educating school children today. http://www.phoenixsymphony.org/education/symphony_for_schools.aspx

Play classical music for your family! Use it as background music, get the work done music, go to sleep music, anytime music. I’ll give a list of some great pieces to start listening to on my next blog. But give me your ideas to include. What pieces of classical music do you love to hear or play?


  1. GREAT CONCEPT! This is something that was never taught to me as a youngster! Such a loss to my true musical potential, too!

    Just an idea: You can develop a bit of a classical selection via Playlist.com if you would like to include it on your blog. You need not have the music have an auto-start; readers can manually start the music if they are interested in the selections.

  2. I wish my school had done this! I LOVE classical music, but there are only about 4 songs that I know the name/composer of.

    My kids do Let's Play Music, and one thing I love about it is that they've created puppet shows to go along with some classical pieces. Currently, it's Triumphant March from Aida by Verdi. My kids have only wanted to listen to that one song all week! :)

    Classics I love: Canon in D, Brandenburg... See? I can't think of the names of any others! :(




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