Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Beethoven's Wig 4: Dance Along Symphonies

Beethoven's Wig 4: Dance Along Symphonies

Spring 2009 Music
Ages: 4 - 10 yrs.
Producer: Beethoven's Wig
CD Price: $14.98
A fresh serving of sly wit and wackiness from Beethoven's Wig, the audio series that grafts comic and apt lyrics to classical music's top 40, all in the name of music appreciation. After a light-hearted vocal romp through various pieces, the funny hat comes off for top-notch instrumental versions of the works, performed by professional symphony orchestras and military bands.

Here, series creator Richard Perlmutter, accompanied by a cadre of operatic singers, applies his fertile imagination to waltzes, polkas, marches and more. A sampling: Emile Waldteufel's "Skater's Waltz" becomes "Give Me a 10," about a skater whose routine "Has a difficulty/ Of the highest degree/And throughout I shine/Like my costume design"). In "Blow Blow Blow," set to Tchaikovsky's NeapolitanDance from Swan Lake, the trumpet gets its due ("But it's still the same old story/All the dancers get the glory/While they're out there tippy-toeing/We forget the trumpet's blowing"). And Johann Strauss Jr.'s Annen Polka is transformed into a wickedly infectious ditty called "Rover Roll Over." In signature style, this newest Beethoven's Wig CD offers listeners of all ages entry into the world of classical music by taking it out of its formal clothes, with obvious love and respect for the genre.

Lynne Heffley   ©2009 Parents' Choice
A freelance writer and editor for the arts and non-profit organizations, Lynne is a former staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, where she established the paper's first weekly children's arts and entertainment beat.

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