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Turn a Sonatina into a mini-Opera

I have two 12-year-olds taking their grade 5 exam this year. The Sonatina in A minor by Gurlitt is the biggest work for the exam, and by the time they learned the notes there was little energy for musicality. Yes, I know they should be learning the musicality while learning the notes but that didn't happen this year for a variety of reasons.

I created a video with a mini 'Bugs Bunny' style opera libretto and it had a great impact on them. These were the notes I emailed them to accompany the video...

What kind of music inspires you? Music that's lively and makes you feel something or music where someone is just playing the notes? The first of course! When you learn the notes of a piece (and you have :-) it's time to have Fun!! Instead of repeating the notes over and over to get more secure, (Boring!), listen, really

L I S T E N to the music you are playing. What is it telling you? What does it make you feel? Happy? Sad? Scared? All of the above, at different times?

I've added a possible story to this Sonatina. Yours will probably be different, and, if you don't have a story (YET), use mine to make a mini Bugs Bunny Opera for this beautiful Sonatina. Have some FUN while you are playing the notes 😊

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