14 March 2011

Peter and the Wolf

As a mother, I find myself assuming my kids will love what I love. I can't imagine why someone wouldn't absolutely LOVE watching musicals, playing basketball, or listening to the Beatles. Sometimes I know exactly what I'm doing, other times, I don't realize it until Jeff give me the "are you sure they like it?" look .

I hate to think I'm only exposing my kids to what I love, so I like to give them fair information, and let them decide. Except that one time when Jack started saying he wanted to learn how to play a brass instrument. I told him they weren't very fun, and just too loud. Not a huge fan.

The reality of it is that kids are mostly a product of their environment. So, we expose them to things that we think will be good for them. Obviously, music has been a big part of Jeff and I's relationship from the beginning. We met in an orchestra, became friends in a bluegrass band, toured to Europe in said band, and have since played several gigs, and supported each other in various musical interests. Most of our favorite date memories come from going to the Symphony. We catalog our date details by what concerto or symphony was played that evening. If you haven't thought we're nerds by now, then you probably are one yourself. We know we are, and we're fine with it.

So, as we sat in Abravanel Hall with Jack and Jane yesterday for one of the "lollipop" concerts, my heart was overflowing. I loved being able to sit in that concert hall with not just Jeff, but with my own kids. I have so many memories there, starting when I was not much older than Jack, performing with hundreds of Suzuki students. We had high hopes that their attitudes of that morning...

Me: Jack, are you excited about the Symphony today?

Jack: Not really.

Me: Jane, are you excited about the Symphony today?

Jane: Is there going to be any singing?

Me: Nope, just the Symphony. There will be violins, cellos, basses, drums, flutes...

Jane: No singing? BOR-ING!

... we were hoping this concert would change their ideas of the Symphony.

Jane was a bit fidgety as they began, wanting to get just the right view. Luckily, in concerts intended for kids, this is okay. Lucky for us, because Jane always has commentary and only has one volume. She and Jack got through the first two short pieces (Jack more interested than Jane) by anticipating the reason we came: Peter and the Wolf.

As it started, Jack was completely captivated by the story unfolding before him. And Jane couldn't take her eyes off the dancers. (She started a ballet/jazz class last month that she can't seem to get enough of. She now prances down our hallway.)

I was so tickled to watch them enjoy the performance wholeheartedly. It was short and sweet, and the narrator, symphony, and characters from Ballet West were just right.

As we walked out into the hallway after the show, Jack asked, "do they have shows for kids like this all the time?".

I promised him we'd be back. This time because he wants to.

Jane doing her duck sound, and Jack letting out his pent-up sillies...

Another great memory created.