Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Magic Flute retold by Anne Gatti

I've had a mild appreciation for opera ever since the 1984 movie Amadeus. As some of you may recall, the multiple Oscar Award winning picture included quite a few scenes from The Magic Flute. I'm proud to say that even Emma and Mouse recognize Der Höle Rache though it pains me to admit that they attribute the famous aria to Barbie's Mermaidia. (I bet Mozart never saw that coming.)

In any case, while preparing for a course on teaching music I stumbled upon a fantastic picture book and CD set. The book guides young readers/listeners through the story of The Magic Flute while referencing specific tracks on the accompanying CD. The artwork by Peter Malone is as beautiful as it is expressive and the CD is devoid of any distracting 'turn-the-page-now' indicators.

Instinctively, I would say this particular version is best suited for an audience older than eight years, but could easily be used into early high school, if only to teach appreciation of the art form.

I, for one, feel like I went to the opera today, so I thought I should share the wealth. For your viewing pleasure, I've included a YouTube clip of Der Hölle Rache, a personal favourite. I've spared you the Barbie version. You can thank me later.

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