Catapulting into Classical

A headlong leap into music, history, and composing

Musical Tales and More from the DSO

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Music books with apple with eighth note stem and leaf

Back to school! Books, and an apple for the (music) teacher.

I was looking for upcoming webcasts from the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO Live) and found a resource designed for teachers and students that is enjoyable and interesting for everyone.

The DSO has created a number of hour-long programs to acquaint students with the orchestra and classical music, the DSO Live Classroom Edition, and new content will be added as the year continues.  Each program also includes recent music, some of it homegrown in Detroit.

Each program includes a downloadable resource guide for teachers (and the rest of us) with information on the music, composers, music basics, concert etiquette and more.

“An American Adventure” presents music representing different regions of the US, including Copland’s Appalachian Spring, Grofé’s Grand Canyon Suite, Joplin’s Maple Leaf Rag, and Bernstein’s portrait of New York City in Three Dance Episodes from On the Town.

“Building the Orchestra” highlights each section of the orchestra and includes excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No 4, Khachaturian’s Sabre Dance, Sousa’s Washington Post March, Bizet’s Carmen Suite No 1, and the Fugue from Britten’s The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, among others.

“Musical Tales” focuses on music that tells a story, and includes Respighi’s Pines of Rome, Hoe Down from Copland’s Rodeo, excerpts from Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition and more.  Even adults might enjoy drawing their own pictures based on Pictures at an Exhibition (blank drawing pages provided in the accompanying guide…hmmm, stick figures at the Great Gate of Kiev?  The Hut on Hen’s Legs seems more achievable).

Drawing of hut on hen legs and confused stick figures in ornate frame

Coming up in November will be a program titled “The Four Seasons.”  Teachers can register their classroom on the website.

So check it out, the programs are fun and the music is great!


Image attributions: Books and apple photo and stick figure drawing, C. Gallant, 2016.  Photo of frame (which originally contained Lucca’s Annunciation) by Andreas Praefcke, [Public domain] via Wikimedia Commons,


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