Music Monday Review: Carnival of the Animals

Carnival of the Animals cover art

What do you imagine elephants dancing, kangaroos leaping or a tortoise doing the can-can might sound like?  Would it be loud and slow or a quiet whisper?  Camille Saint-Saëns, a famous French composer, once did just this to entertain guests at a party.

Your family can become “guests of his party” as you experience and imagine the sounds of these animals and several others through Carnival of the Animals as presented by the Maestro Classics series.

This latest installment of the beautifully produced educational and entertaining children’s classical music performance series does not disappoint.

If your children are anything like mine, naturally inquisitive and imaginative about the world of animals, they will delight in hearing this performance by the London Philharmonic Orchestra that is as vibrant and colorful as the cover art accompanying it.

Upon a first listen, my six-year-old’s eyes widened and his face spread into a animated smile as he proclaimed:  “I think a lion would like to dance to this!”

The original score is performed in two ways:  first accompanied by a collection of poems written by American poet Ogden Nash and then in its original instrumental form.  In between are the informational “About the Music” and “About the Composer” tracks, standard to the Maestro Classics series.

This recommended series is a fabulous find for anyone looking to introduce their children to the world of classical music.  This is the tenth release by Maestro Classics, a program that seeks to introduce children to the world of classical music through child-friendly stories, narration and snippets of history.

We find them particularly enjoyable in the car.  The stories and behind the scenes type mini history lessons that accompany the music are just enough to entertain our restless boys.

This series would also be an appropriate addition for schools or home educators seeking to learn more about music history.  They’re engaging and easily digestible for young and old(er) ears alike.

Carnival of the Animals is one party I think you’ll enjoy being invited to again and again!

Recommended for:  Road Trips & Classrooms

*I have reviewed offerings from this series in the past, and I wanted to reiterate my encouragement to parents who aren’t familiar with the stories to familiarize themselves with their plots.  Some of the parings use less contemporary tales which may have some elements that are frightening for young children (just as if you read the original Grimm’s Fairy Tales).  


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One Response to Music Monday Review: Carnival of the Animals

  1. nina January 21, 2013 at 5:43 pm #

    This does sound interesting. Thanks for the review.

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