Peter & the Wolf: Live on Stage

8 May 2009, Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall, London

wolfThis absolutely rocked. The movie was beautiful (it won an Oscars for best animated short film in 2008), the live orchestra was fantastic and most of all, the kids in the audience made the experience heartwarming. Some parts set the kids off giggling and when hearing their giggles, you just can’t help but smile. Warms the heart 🙂

What a great show for introducing kids to classical music and the orchestra. Before the film started, a narrator came on stage to introduce the characters & their orchestral counterparts, explain what stop-frame animation is and also show some of the sets from the film. This helped to make the evening more child-friendly and it also helped show them the incredible amount of work that goes on behind films… which is really good, as I imagine children are so used to seeing cartoons, they don’t think about the music or any other aspect, other than what is happening visually.

I really enjoyed the live orchestral music. Particularly as each character had their own theme tune & instrument, at moments I found myself trying to watch both the film and the musician at the same time. The orchestra really seamlessly accompanied the film and narrated the story.

An incredible amount of research went into producing this film, including living in a wolf sanctuary, hunting for a boy to base Peter on (they found him in a school playground in rural Russia) and creating a 22m x 16m forest set…

radostkiThe evening actually started off with a cute short film, called Joyets (Radostki). It cleverly played on how children play, think, as well as imitate the world around them. I wish I took animation back at uni.

You know what I would love to watch? An evening of Tom and Jerry cartoons with live orchestral accompaniment. I wonder if they do that..!


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