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Vivaldi "Winter" Part 2

Jan 09, 2020

Last month we shared a simple “stuffed animal choreography” activity for you and your kiddo to engage with the first movement of Vivaldi’s Winter. Check it out here.

Today we have an alternate activity for the same movement which is just as simple. This involves some type of rhythm instrument.  We might choose rhythm sticks or a drum - feel free to pull out the wooden spoons, or get creative with your own found instruments. The steady beat “shivering” sections are perfect for practicing playing a steady beat. When the violin comes in with the howling wind we simply stop playing, cup a hand over an ear to represent “listening” and resume playing the rhythm instruments when the steady beat comes back. You could also get a little fancier with some wind actions of your own during the “windy” solo violin sections. Your little one may or may not make it through the whole piece, and that is just fine! (Just as a heads up, there is some musical “running” and “teeth chattering” towards the end of the movement!)

For little ones who are too small to play an instrument, you can help them feel the beat by tapping their body or moving their legs or arms to the beat. Get creative with how you experience the howling wind sections together (a gentle tickle or blow? A scarf blowing around them?).

Today we also wanted to introduce the second movement. It’s a gorgeous slow movement (marked “Largo”) that represents some peaceful moments inside by the fire on a cold, stormy day.

It can feel more challenging to engage our little ones with a slower piece of music. While it might not get them up and dancing, you can still create meaningful experiences around a calmer piece. Here are a few ideas:

  1. Turn this one on during quiet moments of your day. It might be a good choice for pre-naptime or bedtime, or even during bathtime or lunch. Use the word “slow” and make slow movements with your hands or body as you listen and talk about it. For older children, introduce the term “Largo” as a musical word that means slow..
  2. If your child is old enough to enjoy pretend play, have fun setting up an imaginary scene together. Pretend to build a fire, make a pretend cup of hot cocoa, look out the window at the pretend storm as you listen. Snuggle up together and see how your pretend story unfolds, letting your child’s imagination lead the way!
  3. Get out some crayons and paper, and let your child design a piece of art inspired by the music. You can provide descriptions and guidance (talk about the fireplace, the cozy warm feeling of being inside on a cold day, etc.) or leave it open ended and just let them listen and create.

Here are two great YouTube recordings for you. The second one includes a video from a live performance.

1. Itzhak Perlman and London Philharmonic Orchestra

2. Cynthia Freivogel and Voices of Music Ensemble

Here is a spotify link with all 3 movements.

Here is an amazon music link with all 3 movements.

Let us know which of these activities you try, and how they go for you! 

Stay tuned for some 3rd movement activity suggestions! 

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