Description: Come explore the variety of music for keyboard instruments - the Fender Rhodes, electric keyboard, toy piano, and melodica - with this program meant for children and their families. Young people can be introduced to these alternative piano sounds that are being use in classical music today, realized using each composer’s unique musical language. With many of the pieces inspired by popular children’s tunes, the music appeals to both young children and their parents. An educational and explorational demonstration, PRESS PLAY encourages listeners to consider the variety of sounds surrounding us, the ways in which instruments produce sounds, and the varying styles of music being composed today.
Suitable for Young Children
David Wolfson: Twinkle, Dangit!
Self-titled as “an obsessive variation on a well-known children’s song”, Wolfson’s Twinkle, Dangit! is written for toy piano, rubber duck, and train whistle. It’s a theatrical piece which depicts the all-too-familiar frustration of a young piano student who is struggling to play “Twinkle Twinkle”.
Erik Griswold: Old MacDonald’s Yellow Submarine
This suite for toy pianos, music boxes, and “miscellaneous bits” takes the tunes from our childhood and mashes them to create a sense of a new yet familiar memory. Its varied sections range from nostalgic and wistful to playful and cheeky. Six movements include “On that farm”, “e-i-e-i-o”, “Pink Memories”, “Chooks!”, “Bicycle Lee Hooker”, and “Old MacDonald’s Yellow Submarine”.
Chick Corea: selections from Children’s Songs 20 pieces for keyboard or fender rhodes
This set of miniatures blend Corea’s jazz sound world with the formal structure of classical composer Béla Bartok. Imitating the latter’s “Mikrokosmos”, a set of graduated piano pieces for children learning to play the piano, Corea’s Children’s Songs brings us into today’s world, written for electric keyboard or Fender Rhodes, using a musical language appealing to classical and jazz listeners alike.
Notes for presenters:
Program minimum duration: 40 minutes (30 minutes playing, 10 minutes speaking)
Maximum duration: 1 hour (45 minutes music, 15 minutes speaking)