We’re heading right for the holidays so what a great opportunity we received to review The Nutcracker from Maestro Classics. I love the end of October because it means Halloween will be over and we can focus on Christmas, our favorite holidays.
The ballet is 1 hour long and the narrator is Jim Weiss, he’s also the narrator of our history curriculum so my son was happy about that. The focus is on the music and I like how the narrator points out different emotions that are being portrayed by the characters that are reflected in the music. It was nice to sit back and just listen and ask the kids questions on what they thought was happening.
My son particularly enjoyed the fighting scenes and the moment when the Mouse King is killed. He needs action, he had asked if he was going to die and then it happened.
My son listened to this while he played blocks with his sister, we’ve actually listened to it a couple times so he’s caught some things that he missed the first time. It’s nice to listen to over lunch so we can all discuss what’s going on in the story. He was intrigued by the idea that they all came alive by magic or “something” according to him.
You could feel the excitement through the music when the battle was going on and my son particularly perked up to this session and wasn’t so interested in the various music from the dancers from around the world.
My son enjoyed the story and we read through the picture books, he likes to compare what he thought they would look like vs what he sees in the book as well as the differences in the story.
We looked up Tchaikovsky to get some information on him and listen to his other work as well. The Nutcracker is a nice addition to any holiday studies that can be filled in with other books and resources.
I enjoyed the audio and we really like Jim Weiss as the narrator, he just brings it alive. I would definitely recommend this for your holiday studies. We’ve listened to is multiple times already, it’s nice to listen to over school work or quiet time.
The Nutcracker is available as a CD or an audio MP3 file for easy download.