Posted by: tammyspianostudio | March 28, 2011

Listening 27

Hello classical music listeners! Aaron Copland: Appalachian Spring (AKA “Simple gifts”) Michael Flatley ~ Lord of the Dance finale (music starts at 3:00 mark….after the thundering applause, music starts again at the 4:45 mark) President Obama’s inauguration – “Variations on a Shaker Melody” (The outdoor temperature was 37 degrees.)

  • Cello – Yo-Yo Ma
  • Clarinet – Anthony McGill
  • Piano – Gabriele Montero
  • Violin – Itzhak Perlman

Aaron Copland is this week’s composer.  Do you know “Simple Gifts”?  Many composers have arranged this piece.  Michael Flatly, lead dancer for ‘Lord of the Dance‘, used this theme throughout the show with a finale chorus line of Irish dancing ~ a spectacular live performance.  Thanks to my husband who provided us with tickets to this show on my birthday 10 or 12 years ago.


‘Tis the gift to be simple, ’tis the gift to be free, ‘Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right, ‘Twill be in the valley of love and delight.
When true simplicity is gain’d, To bow and bend we shan’t be asham’d,
To turn, turn will be our delight, Till by turning, turning we come ’round right

There is no Activity Sheet this week.  Listen and watch some of the musical variations of “Appalachian Spring” above.  See if you can play this piece by ear.  Can you harmonize it, too?

Happy listening!



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