On a recent Saturday morning, the Babes brood found ourselves amidst a group of families lolling around on oversized bean bags listening to a Beethoven performance.
OAE Tots on April 17 at King’s Place arts centre (near King’s Cross) was a one-woman show aimed specifically at families with children under the age of five. Double bassist Cecelia Bruggemeyer from the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment had devised a baby-friendly programme using music by Beethoven as her theme.
There are so many classical concerts for younger listeners springing up around the capital (feature coming soon!) and I’d been wanting to check one out for some time. OAE Tots proved to be a fun and gentle introduction for this age group.
Parents were encouraged to participate but the focus was on getting the kids to engage with the music using familiar actions and rhymes.
The event lasted an hour which sounded long at first but she kept things lively with instruments for the kids to bash, and a movement session when we all had to float like butterflies, stomp like elephants or hop like frogs depending on how she played her strings.
All in all, it was a sweet way to spend a Saturday morning and to get our babes – more used to grooving to Black Eyed Peas, Talking Heads and Dizzee Rascal – expressing some classical attitude for a change.
On the Spot
Bruce, dad to 3-year-old twins Cyrus and Nellie
‘We love Beethoven’s Elephant and Fly music as Cyrus already dances like an elephant, a bit like his dad. We live up in Belsize Park and this is the second OAE Tots event we’ve been to here.
We’ve also taken the kids to an under fives concert at Wigmore Hall but I find this one is better for younger ones. I do think they could add a couple more instruments to mix it up a bit.’