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Tell Us Your Favorite Family Films
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While the debate about the educational value of introducing babies to classical music continues, our anecdotal evidence tells us that kids respond to good music with their whole bodies - from ears to brain to wiggly bodies. Fantasia, with elephants dancing in tutus and Mickey Mouse playing The Sorcerer's Apprentice, offers a perfect introduction to classical music, from Bach to Stravinsky. Seventy years ago, Walt Disney had the radical notion to animate short films to memorable music. Generations have learned Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker Suite from celluloid, and your kids will soon be bopping along to Beethoven and Mussorsky while watching stories created to accompany the famous tunes. With very little dialogue and a wondrous score recorded by Leopold Stokowski and the Philadelphia Philharmonic, Fantasia broke all the rules in 1940, and Disney's updated Fantasia 2000 (performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the direction of James Levine) has an exquisite ode to Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue, that is sure to delight a new generation.
Listening to live music is a treat, yet most kids are too young to sit through hours in a concert hall. For us, the ideal family night out is to spread a blanket under the stars and enjoy our city's free outdoor music. We like to bring a picnic while the sun sets (save dessert for intermission!), and then let the kids wiggle and wriggle while we relax to music under the stars, a yummy summer treat. If you search your local paper, you will likely be surprised with the variety of free performances offered -- we've found puppetry, folk tales, tumbling, drumming and music from around the world. We have also discovered that often, these concerts take place in parks we do not routinely visit, and it gives our kids a chance to explore parts of our city that are new. We like to let our kids help choose what we see, hoping their input will keep them engaged. And they are -- we find kids are natural enthusiasts and dance the night away. Turns out, music appreciation for kids is a walk in the park!
Our Buttery Bits of Wisdom about this Film:
Our Tips for Talking with your kids about this film:
An Outdoor Concert
Age Recommendation: Stroller Babes to Grandparents
Time Allotment: Usually, a few hours
Our Buttery Bits of Wisdom about this Adventure: