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Classics For Kids
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Classics For Kids

Author: Cincinnati Public Radio

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Introduce children to classical music in a fun and entertaining way.
181 Episodes
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At the time when Czech composer Antonin Dvorak was born, the Czech people had no country of their own. The regions where they lived -- Bohemia and Moravia -- were part of the Austrian Empire. Dvorak wrote a lot of Czech-sounding compositions, but hardly ever used any actual folk melodies in his music.
Many composers used European dance forms in their work. Dvorak, Haydn, Chopin and Beethoven are just a few of the composers featured here.
The Hungarian Dances by Johannes Brahms were never really intended for dancing. But that doesn't mean that people in Hungary don't dance! Richard Graber, the director of a Hungarian dance company in Cleveland, talks with Naomi Lewin about Hungarian dancing.
When he was a young pianist, Johannes Brahms accompanied a Hungarian violinist, and fell in love with Hungarian music. His own Hungarian-flavored dances were written to entertain his friends at parties. Those friends convinced Brahms to publish his dances. When the first set was a hit, Brahms wrote and published another set.
Brahms, Bach, and Beethoven are known as the "Three B's" of classical music. Brahms always knew that he wanted to be a composer -- by the time he was six, he had thought up his own system for writing music down on a page.
Even though Schubert's Marche Militaire has the word "march" in the title, it was never actually meant for anyone to march to. Several other composers wrote march music without bands or parades in mind.
Franz Schubert wrote his Marche Militaire for piano four hands -- two people playing the same instrument. Here are some more pieces for piano four hands.
Songs in classical music are usually called "art songs." In German, art songs are called Lieder. Franz Schubert was a master of writing Lieder. Each of his songs combines poetry and music, voice and accompaniment, to make a complete musical short story.
Franz Schubert's father expected his son to be a teacher in the school that he ran. But Schubert didn't last long at that job -- he was much more interested in writing music than paying attention to a classroom full of kids.
A collection of musical firsts, including the first string quartet, the first use of trombones in a symphony, and the first professional musician to make a recording.
In the "Farandole" from Georges Bizet's Arlesienne Suite, there are examples of all three kinds of harmonic texture: monophony, homophony, and polyphony. Hear those terms explained in words and in music.
In celebration of the Christmas season, some classical compositions that have Christmas carols in them.
Georges Bizet was not Jewish, his father-in-law was. Bizet married the daughter of his composition professor, Jacques Halevi. To celebrate Chanukah, we learn about some other Jewish composers of classical music, including Salamone Rossi, Leonard Bernstein, Darius Milhaud, Jacques Offenbach and Aaron Copland.
Georges Bizet's parents were both musicians, so he grew up surrounded by music. Today, Bizet is best remembered for his theatrical music -- operas and incidental music for plays.
Both Gustav Holst and Ralph Vaughn Williams loved using folk music in their music. They were inspired by a "folk song revival" started by an English musician named Cecil Sharp collected thousands of folk tunes from around England in the early 1900's.
St. Paul's Girls' School in London has a sign that says: "Gustav Holst wrote The Planets and taught here." Holst composed his St. Paul's Suite for the student orchestra at St. Paul's Girls' School. Many other composers wrote music for students to perform.
Astronomy is the science that studies the sun, moon, planets, and other objects in the sky. Astrology is not a science - it tries to show how objects in the sky affect people's lives on earth. Gustav Holst loved astrology, and he composed his Planets to be musical pictures of human nature.
Born into a family of composers, Gustav Holst wanted to follow in their footsteps. His career included playing in orchestras and serving as head of music at St. Paul's Girls' School for almost thirty years while also composing.
Appropriately spooky classical music for Halloween.
Many pieces of music from Russian operas have become much more famous in the concert hall than on the opera stage. Some of these pieces include Tchaikovsky's Waltz and Polonaise from Eugene Onegin, Alexander Borodin's Polovstian Dances from Prince Igor, and Sergei Prokofiev's march from The Love for Three Oranges.
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Comments (6)

Mariejose

Can you do a pidcast on Paganini?

Jul 28th
Reply (1)

Alison Rucker

Great list! Thanks! Any chance you'll be covering Weber soon?

Sep 13th
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Armin van Buuren

Thank you a lot for your podcast that teach us something valuable about famous musicians. you are the best.

May 31st
Reply

Tim Sentell

how are you doing I hope all is going well and enjoying the family 😎 live ok

Feb 3rd
Reply (1)
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