Waltzing elephants, xylophone-playing squids, marching lows and much more: they were a bit cheeky – the countless big and small animals who loved to share their annual carnival with the young and young-at-heart audience at the kiwanis special concert in the christuskirche on monday. But they were also quite "hand-tame and above all very entertaining!
Funny animal parade
Many little organ mice then also pricked up their ears attentively and hoarded the funny animal parade. Majestically the lowe roars, tortoises dance in slow motion cancan, from the depth of the forest the cuckoo announces itself.
Who doesn’t know and love them: those of the french composer camille saint-saen in his enjoyable "carnival of the animals"? So aptly drawn musical animal portraits?! Into this fantastic animal world escaped on monday deanery cantor marius popp as well as susanne popp in the context of the traditional special concert of the kiwanis club kronach-frankenwald. "This year we wanted a concert especially for children", declared its president henry weissbach, when he welcomed the many visitors at the beginning of the event. The deanery cantor had recommended the piece "carnival of the animals" to him – a good choice, as it turned out a good choice, as it soon turned out.
Invited were all boys and girls from kindergarten age. Before the magnificent animal parade, the deanery cantor gave his young audience – sitting close to him in the gallery – a child-friendly insight into the function and construction of an organ. The huge musical instrument, also known as the "queen of instruments" due to its coarse and inexhaustible volume of sound is made up of many different metal and wooden pipes with a wide range of different timbres.
The very interested children learned how air gets into the organ pipes and how an organ player can make music with it. There is the pedal, with which even real melodies can be played. The manuals are arranged one above the other like a staircase – and there are, of course, the stops with the colorful and differently pitched sounds. Thus well informed, the whimsical parade of the various animal species could begin with the eagerly awaited appearance of his majesty, the lowen, and his court.
A roaring celebration
The children couldn’t get out of their amazement: after all, the "carnival of the animals" is a great success everything is possible and – let me tell you this much: it was a great party again this year! Each animal was perfectly represented by a different instrument, which the dean’s cantor loved to make shine on the organ through registration and playing in the most expressive sound colors – from the most delicate chords to the most rapid runs. Susanne popp recited the amusing – ironically alienated – intertexts humorously and with a voice full of variations.
The first performance on 9. March 1886 of the "carnival of the animals was a great success. However, saint-saens wanted to stop the triumphal procession and forbid further performances – out of fear for his reputation as a composer to be taken seriously. In addition, he probably feared hostility because of the caricatured quotations from the works of famous colleagues. Unfortunately, the famous stucco was hidden for 40 years, until birds, fishes, lowen, elephants and fishes were finally allowed to celebrate carnival again. The work is ideally suited to introduce even the youngest children to the wonderful world of classical music and at the same time to familiarize them with the various instruments of an orchestra.
But it was by no means "only" the children, who had great fun with the plastic, humorous character pictures of the animals. The adults also enjoyed the wonderful organ concerto, which reached its enchanting climax with the magnificent atmospheric image of the swan elegantly drifting along, before all the animals gathered once again for the roaring finale. "If it were up to me, everyone who wanted to call himself a composer would have to write at least one piece for children", deanery cantor marius popp regretted that there was unfortunately little adequate music literature available.
Appeal to parents
At the same time he appealed to the parents present how important it is, for example, to play blockflote for the motor skills but also for the brain development of their children. It has been proven that children who played such an instrument had a much easier time in the fifth or sixth grade of high school than others of the same age, because of the motor skills they had acquired.
At the end of the afternoon, which was a lot of fun for all young and young-at-heart listeners, the little "organ munchers" had the chance to try their hand at playing the organ – to your great pleasure – try out the keyboards yourself at the console.