Clever Girl

Gleek, who is 5, walked into my office today and said “this music sounds like it is from a movie.”

Me: “Which movie?”

Gleek: “The Fantasia movie.”

Me: “It’s by the same guy.”

I was listening to Beethoven’s 1st, and she was obviously thinking of Beethoven’s 6th, portions of which were used in the original Fantasia. Of all my kids, I’m sure she’s the most musically inclined (so far, anyway) and this kind of cinches it. I’ve been listening to a LOT of music today, most of which is classical/orchestral, and only when Beethoven showed up did she announce the similarity.

Last week I taught her to play chopsticks on the piano. She can play it by ear, and improvises on the intervals pleasingly. She knows what intervals work, and which ones don’t. I guess we’ll have to cave in and get this girl some music lessons at some point, but for now I’m happy to answer her questions and point her at musical explorations she’ll enjoy.

I’ll let her borrow my Beethoven CDs anytime. I mean, it’s not as if I don’t already have all that stuff on my iPod.

10 thoughts on “Clever Girl”

  1. That’s pretty impressive. I didn’t learn to identify similarities in music like that (other than the obvious “it’s classical, not rock” type stuff) until a music history (and a bit of theory) class in senior year of high school.

  2. That’s impressive. To determine if it’s Beethoven she’s recognizing and not classical music in general, see if she can tell Beethoven from Tchaikovsky. For extra credit, Schumann from Beethoven. If she can do that at five, then I forsee an expensive education in her future 🙂

  3. oooooh, if Gleek’s getting interested in music, here’s something to rent to watch with her: “Beethoven Lives Upstairs”. Geared towards kids without talking down to them or driving the parents nuts:

    I think she’d love it – I know our friends’ kids loved it, and they were in the 4 to 7 year old range at the time.

    Disclaimer: I’ve not seen this myself, I’ve only heard chunks of it on the radio and heard plenty of positive recommendations from parents in our social group.

    1. It’s a movie? I knew there was an audio presentation by that name, one from a series that made up a significant portion of my childhood exposure to classical music. Those I can give a whole-hearted endorsement to – heck, I can still listen to the things now!

      1. There is a movie version and an audio drama version. Heck, I’ve even seen it performed live with the Minnesota Orchestra. Definitely recommended, as it is fun and educational for the kids, and quite tolerable for the adults. Although Beethoven was a *much* crazier guy than depicted in the movie.

          1. Yeah. I haven’t checked to see if they’ve done one of Tchaikovsky yet. Now *that* life would require a bit of judicious … editing … to make a show safe for the kids.

            At least nowadays you don’t have to, as a friend of mine put it, “die of consumption or syphillus, or jump off a bridge, to prove you’re a REAL composer”.

          2. Actually, they did do Tchaikovsky. That one had rather less connection to the composer’s personal life, so those details didn’t need to come up.

  4. Clever girl, indeed!

    Beethoven does have a particular “sound,” of course.

    When Wild Thing (our resident music fanatic kid – well, other than me) was about 5ish, my sister was in a Music Appreciation class, wherein Berlioz was studied. Wild Thing could spot Symphony Fantastique in three notes – usually followed by “REWIND IT! TURN IT UP!”

    he loved the drama of the thing. I introduced the same kid to the Carmina Burana and ended up having to buy him a copy. At 6.

    It does my heart good to see kids who enjoy music so, rather than “forgetting” how to sing, as so many do at about 7ish.

Comments are closed.