Before Jordan turned 4, I knew I wanted to to take him to the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra. The youngest age for entry was 4 so I had wait till he grew a little. I brought Josiah to the orchestra last year when he was 6 and he totally enjoyed it too. It might seem really intimidating to bring a noisy toddler into the concert hall, especially one that usually could not sit still. Well, it actually went better than I expected.
We went to watch The Classical Clown a family fun day event where kids are more than welcome.
Jordan was so excited that he dragged me to the waiting lobby an hour earlier. We had to also take a big cushion just for the kids before entering the hall, which is available below the escalators. This is due to the chair that will flip over on kids that are too light.
Conductor for the day was Grant Cooper and he was so funny that it really made me rethink my perception of conductors. Besides just conducting, he actually had to act as well. The clown was obviously very funny, played by buffoon soloist Dan Kamin. Jordan kept asking me when will the clown appear as he only appeared after the first song.
The programme went like this:
GLINKA Ruslan and Ludmilla Overture
MENDELSSOHN A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Dance of the Clowns
BRITTEN Simple Symphony: Frolicsome Finale
FUCIK Entry of the Gladiators
PROKOFIEV Peter and the Wolf: Peter’s Walking Theme
STRAVINSKY Suite No. 2: Waltz
GRIEG Peer Gynt: In the Hall of the Mountain King
SATIE (arr. COOPER) Gymnopedie No. 1
ROSSINI William Tell Overture
BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 1: Scherzo
STRAUSS Emperor Waltz: excerpts
While the music played, The Clown made us laugh with mostly acts of mime. It was like watching a silent movie of Charlie Chaplin days with just music and action.
It was nice change when he called a young audience on stage for one of the acts. Basically, the story centred around the clown trying to take over the conductor’s job.
He finally did it when the conductor told him to dress like a conductor so he came out with a suit and crazy hair to match.
The conductor himself turned into a clown at the end when he realised that was a more popular position. This was nice to see him do the mime too.
Jordan was most excited at the song GRIEG Peer Gynt: In the Hall of the Mountain King as he had been watching this played on orchestra on youtube a lot. I was really glad they played songs that even a four year old can appreciate.
So check out MPO more and bring the kids out on a special date there.
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MPO website: www.mpo.com.my