Introduction to the Romantic Era
The Romantic Era began in roughly 1830 and ended in the year 1900. Compositions became increasingly expressive and inventive. Many Romantic composers took their inspiration from art and literature.
Romantic music is “all about feelings” - visit this site which has a great explanation of Romantic Music for kids.
Watch this video of favorite Romantic composers
Lesson 1: Impromptu in G flat – Schubert
Listen to Impromptu in G flat Opus 90 No. 3
Listen to the same piece below (non-video)
To learn more about Schubert, use the following two resources:
Classics for Kids – Nice radio show about Schubert geared for children – a must listen!
Free Printable book – Schubert: The Story of the Boy Who Wrote Beautiful Songs
Lesson 2: Dies Irae – Berlioz
Listen to Dies Irae from Berlioz' Requiem.
Dallas Symphony Orchestra – Berlioz Biography
Learn about the timpani - can you pronounce timpani? Someone who plays timpani is called a timpanist.
"March" 8 Pieces for Timpani
Lesson 3: Minute Waltz – Chopin
This audio clip and written article explains the background of this Chopin waltz perfectly.
Listen to Chopin's Minute Waltz (Waltz Opus 64 no. 1):
Watch this close up (and slightly slower) version of The Minute Waltz
Listen to additional recordings of The Minute Waltz:
You might want to bring up HOMOGRAPHS and talk about words that sound differently but are spelled the same.
Learn about Chopin at Making Music Fun
Download this FREE book by Thomas Tapper: Chopin: The Story of the Boy Who Made Beautiful Melodies
Lesson 4: Libestraum No. 3 – Liszt
Listen to these two recordings of Liebestraum by Franz Liszt
Watch this biography of Franz Liszt
Liszt was a PRODIGY– what does this mean?
Read Liszt: The Story of a Boy Who Became a Great Pianist and Teacher (free download)
You can view the music (also known as the SCORE) through this link... (click “downloand pdf sheet music)
Additional fun listening - Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 by Liszt
Lesson 5: Ride of the Valkyries – Wagner
Listen to Ride of the Valkyries (both audio and video links below)
Learn how to pronounce 'valkyrie'
How to pronounce Wagner (it isn't how it looks!)
Wagner's life story may not be fit for children, so you may want to research ahead of them! This link from The Biography Channel might be helpful.
The French Horn, a Brief History
Lesson 6: “La donna e mobile” from Rigoletto - Verdi
Listen to La donna e mobile – featuring Pavarotti
Another version - featuring Andrea Bocelli
How to pronounce La donna e mobile:
How to pronounce Verdi:
This is for an orchestra and a TENOR. If your children aren't familiar with operatic voices, this site gives a nice explanation of the classification of voices in opera. (scroll down and look for “TENOR” on the left hand side)
Adults, you can preview a translation of this opera's story and see if you would like to share it with your children.
Check out this Fast and Friendly Guide to Giuseppe Verdi
"Verdi and Opera" From Opera America
Lesson 7: Symphony no, 4, Third Movement - Brahms
Listen to the third movement
Listen to the entire symphony (It's lengthy, but might provide good background music for your day. It is one of my personal favorites!)
Are you pronouncing the composer's name correctly? Watch the video below to find out.
Here is a good article about all four of Brahms' symphonies, and why he was such an intriguing composer.
Learn more about Brahms at Making Music Fun.
Lesson 8: “November”, from Seasons - Tchaikovsky
Listen to “November” performed on piano by the famous composer and pianist, Sergei Rachmaninov
Listen to “November” performed by orchestra
Learn how to pronounce Tchaikovsky's full name
Listen to the entire recording of all of Tchaikovsky's Seasons.
This piece is supposed to sound like a Troika ride. Do you know what a Troika is? Read this Wikipedia Article to find out more.
Learn about Tchaikovsky at Making Music Fun and Kids Music Corner - Tchaikovsky
Lesson 9: “Love Theme” from Romeo & Juliet Fantasy Overture - Tchaikovsky
Listen to the Love Theme From Romeo & Juliet Fantasy Overture
Read this synopsis of Romeo and Juliet from Kids Love Shakespeare.
Listen to the ENTIRE Overture from Romeo and Juliet
Pop singer Eric Carman singing “Never Gonna Fall in Love Again”
“Lovely, so Lovely” - from Disney's Three Musketeers
Lesson 10: Also Sprach Zarathustra – Strauss
Listen to Sunrise from Also Sprach Zarathustra
Another version – great for identifying instruments
The history of the novel and then the tone poem is complex – NPR has a nice article worth reading to educate yourself a bit more.
In case you are interested, you can view the entire musical score – intricate, but shows all of the instruments used.
Listen to the entire Symphonic Poem, Also Sprach Zarathustra
Eumir Deodato's rendition of the piece, a Latin pop version which won a Grammy in 1973
Read about Richard Strauss. He was not only a great composer, but a brave person.
Learn 15 facts about Richard Strauss and complete the notebooking page that follows.