Every year the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra puts on a special concert just for local kids and families. This year, the HSO Free Family Concert is The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, a fantastic symphonic program tailor-made for young people.
This awesome concert for kids by the English composer Benjamin Britten is a marvelous introduction to the symphony. It’s based on a noble tune by Henry Purcell; we’ll also enjoy more of Purcell’s music, and the sprightly Overture to Candide by Leonard Bernstein. The FREE Family Concert is open to the public at no charge, and is preceded by educational fun and games in the concert hall lobby. There’s something for the whole family!
Narration and puppetry (yes, PUPPETS!) performed by Huntsville M.E.T.
Getting Ready for the Concert
Before coming to the concert, you may want to do a couple of things with your kids. Ashley Poppe is a violinist with the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra as well as a local mom. She knows a thing or two about involving children in the concert.
“Attending this FREE HSO concert could be one of the most unique and enriching experiences your family will ever encounter. All different kinds of musicians come together, and when our conductor, Gregory Vajda, stands on that podium and waves his baton, something magical happens. Our differences melt away, and our many voices become one powerful, penetrating voice which brings to life the melodies of great composers, past and present. We are a part of something great. We create something beautiful, powerful, engaging, exhilarating, enriching, and uniting. And you can be part of that too!”
Before You Go: Parent Pro-Tips
Ashley has some great tips for parents…
Listen and engage your children with music.
Listen to parts of A Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra at home before the concert. One thing I like to do to encourage creativity in the minds of my children is to put on music and color with crayons or colored pencils. You can have them use colors for instruments or sounds or dynamics or rhythms. Does this sound red or blue or green? Does this sound like lines or circles? Sometimes, we even dance around the table while coloring. Be creative and make music an interactive experience! Involve their senses.
Read a book on the instruments of the orchestra.
I like Meet the Orchestra if you happen to have little ones who have never been to a symphony concert before.
After the concert is over, come back to hear us! The HSO is committed to offering beautiful musical experiences for your family that you won’t want to miss. One of my personal favorites is an entertaining and interactive learning experience called Music Explorers Club (formerly known as Opus Tadpole). It’s completely FREE and the perfect way for youngest listeners to learn about the instruments in the orchestra! Anyone attending the Music Explorers Club gets into our Sneak Previews for free immediately following the program.
All of this information and more can be found at hso.org. Our community is fortunate to have this organization that wants to build up families full of creativity and beauty with music.
Hearing a live symphony appeals to your senses, grabs your heart, and takes hold of your soul in a way that watching or listening to a recording simply cannot. Don’t you want your kids to experience that?
HSO Free Family Concert Details
Who: Huntsville Symphony Orchestra presents their free family concert to kids of all ages!
When: Saturday, February 2nd, 2019 | Pre-concert activities start at 9:30 AM, concert begins at 11:00 AM
(Plan to arrive early & give yourself time to park – seats fill up fast!)
Where: Mark C. Smith Concert Hall at the VBC (map)