Saturday, April 26, 2008

Classical Emotions


I like classical music. I'm not ashamed to admit it. Some people out there (incluing my husband) would rather eat raw chicken than listen to classical music. I'm sure a few of you are in that category. But I grew up with it. My parents didn't listen to anything but classical. As a kid, I would put on the Swan Lake or Nutcracker records (yes, RECORDS) and dance around the house. Then in school I played the cello, and out of school I played the piano. So I just got used to classical music. And I grew to love it. I even like opera (not all of them, and not the singy-talky parts--those make me want to blow my brains out. Just the main songs). In fact--little known tidbit about me--if I could be the best in the world at any one talent, it would be singing opera. But back to my point, I love classical music. But I don't listen to it often, mainly because my husband detests it. So recently I realized with sadness that my kids, small though they may be, have had virtually no exposure to classical music. It's really important to me that my kids be brought up with a classical education--art, music, and literature. So I decided to start making it a part of their upbringing. I bought (well, I use that word losely--my husband got it somehow from the internet) Fantasia. And then I changed the #5 preset in my car from B98.7 to a classical station. Since I can't listen to my own music in the car very often anyway (because the kids always want a movie), I figured I might be able to just play classical music and see if they would accept that as an alternative. So the other day I was driving along and I turned on the classical station. There was a very suspenseful orchestral piece on. Well, a minute or two into it, the music began to get very intense. And Daphne (age nearly 3) exclaimed from the backseat, "Mommy! What's going to happen??!" At first I didn't realize that she was referring to the music, and I thought maybe she noticed me driving over the yellow line a little bit. But then she began to narrate what her imagination pictured was going on during this music. I can't remember exactly, but it involved a witch and a unicorn. It really touched me that she was already beginning to understand the tone of the music. A few minutes later, the piece changed to a piano solo by a different composer. It was very bangy (don't you love that technical term? All those years of playing piano has really paid off). And I said, "Daphne, do you hear the piano?" She listened for a minute and said, "Yes, Mommy. It's a mad piano." Sigh...it just melted my heart. Maybe my kids will learn to grow up to love and understand classical music after all. Even if their dad's idea of classical music is something by the Creedence Clearwater Revival.

7 comments:

jennie w. said...

i think all kids love to listen to classical music, and not just from Baby Einstein. Somewhere along the way we talk them out of it.

Mindi said...

i was an orchestra geek in h.s., too--i played the violin. i didn't grow up on classical, what was in my parent's 8 track player was abba, carpenters, west side story, music man, and more carpenters. kind of eclectic.
my kids all like what i listen to because they have no choice. it would be good for me to step out of my box and put in a little classical--thanks for that

CaraDee said...

I love classical too. And I love Daphne's reaction.

Alice Wills Gold said...

What a wonderful way to illustrate the story of the music...nothing is greater than through the eyes of a child!

Mia said...

Yeah for the great response to the music! I always wonder how to expose my kids to the things that I love and my hubby doesn't. Together time in the car is a good way to get some of my music into their ears.

Chelsea said...

I'm a classical music lover too, and so is Eric (he's even into opera). How fun that Daphne was feeling the music that much!

alex dumas said...

I think your kids will do just fine if you expose them to it once in a while. My nieces love the Barbie movies, and they have lots of classical music in them, so when they hear it coming from my room, they recognize it and get all excited. And start dancing. It's awesome.