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Beethoven's Wig: Sing Along Symphonies


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Audio CD, March 5, 2002
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Frequently Bought Together

Beethoven's Wig: Sing Along Symphonies + Beethoven's Wig 2: More Sing-Along Symphonies + Beethoven's Wig 3: Many More Sing-Along Symphonies
Price for all three: $32.86

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 5, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Rounder / Umgd
  • ASIN: B000060OLA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,184 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Beethoven's Wig (5th Symphony, Beethoven)
2. Franz Liszt the Famous Pianist (Hungarian Rhapsody #2, Liszt)
3. Please Don't Play Your Violin at Night (Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Mozart)
4. Can You Can Can? (Can Can, Offenbach)
5. Just For Elise (Fur Elise, Beethoven)
6. Haydn's Great Surprise (Surprise Symphony, Haydn)
7. Kings and Queens of England (Trumpet Tune, Purcell)
8. Drip, Drip, Drip (Pizzicato from Sylvia, Delibes)
9. Harmony (The Merry Peasant, Schumann)
10. Hey Guitar Teacher (Bouree, Bach)
11. Tchaikovsky's Cannonball (1812 Overture, Tchaikovsky)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

Inspired and wildly imaginative, Beethoven's Wig is one of the best introductions to classical music you could give to your children. Featuring snippets of 11 classical music staples--Beethoven, Bach, Mozart, Haydn, et al.--the disc and its creators, Richard Perlmutter and friends, pour on the silly lyrics the first time around to familiarize young ears to the old masters. Then in the last half of the record, the orchestra plays the same "serious" music pieces instrumentally. You might cheerfully recall Alan Sherman's popular spoofs of old classical works in Wig and you'll again chuckle at pieces like "Drip, Drip, Drip," which adapts Delibes's "Pizzicato from Sylvia." You'll also marvel at the expertise throughout the CD, with all the pieces well played yet thoroughly fun. Beethoven's Wig is an orchestral treasure with a sense of humor as old or as new as its listeners (and the fun questions that run throughout the CD's liner notes are almost as entertaining as the zany musical interludes). Highly recommended. --Martin Keller

Customer Reviews

Very good music; very fun lyrics.
Virginia Dailey
Beethoven's Wig is a wonderful way for children to learn and enjoy classical music.
D. Snellings
I highly recommend this CD to anyone with children.
E. Kinnon

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

109 of 111 people found the following review helpful By Joy Fleisig on December 31, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I am a 33 year old woman who has been a classical music lover for virtually my entire life. I found 'Beethoven's Wig' quite by accident while browsing on Amazon, and after listening to the snippets provided, I was laughing so hard that I knew I had to buy it. What a wonderful way to get young children interested in music! And of course, it's not only for children. I actually bought this as a present for my mother, who has been a classical music lover HER whole life (and who would [be so upset] if I revealed her age), and she was tickled pink by it!
It's actually an old tradition to mate "fun" lyrics to classical music in order to make the music easy to learn. My mother tells me how she learned 'Morning' from the 'Peer Gynt Suite' as 'Morning is dawning/And Peer Gynt is yawning/Under a statue of Grieg', and I myself know two crazy versions of the 'Soldier's Chorus' from 'Faust'. Richard Perlmutter here is a worthy successor to this tradition. Here he makes up wonderful lyrics for 11 well-known classical pieces. These lyrics are wildly imaginative, hilarious, and clearly well thought-out. Many of the tracks include musicological or biographical details about the composers involved.
The absolute highlight is the 'Pizzicato' from Delibes' 'Sylvia', where Sylvia leaves the faucet 'drip, drip, dripping' and tons of havoc in her wake. Perlmutter even manages to weave in an ad for a plumber here! His version of Offenbach's 'Can-Can' is tons of fun and will no doubt start you dancing, and in 'Just for Elise', her piece is stolen by Maurice from Greece in his valise and they call the police and go to the Justice of the Peace.
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 13, 2002
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This CD is an absolute tour de force of entertainment and education, powered by lyric writing of exceptional craft and imagination that can be appreciated by all ages, from toddlers to the great grandparents. It evokes a century of musical storytelling, in the most whimsical and clever traditions spanning Gilbert & Sullivan to Tin Pan Alley to the best of Sesame Street.
Lyricist and singer Richard Perlmutter is clearly someone who understands children as well as he understands music, and his love and passion for both fairly burst through the speakers on every track. Fur Elise alone is worth the price of the CD. And Beethovenï, Wig is not just for small children: my 12-year old daughter, upon hearing the lyrics sung to Fur Elise, dashed immediately to the piano, which she had given up two years ago and began playing the piece again for the first time since I can remember and singing Perlmutterï's delightful lyrics from the activity booklet included in the CD package. Now she's saying she wants to perform it in her middle school talent night.
This CD is beautiful gift to all our children and, someday, to their children and may have the power to do as much for preserving the classical repertoire as do the finest conservatories. With, of course, a nod and a wink and lots of chuckles along the way.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Matthew G. Sherwin HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 13, 2005
Format: Audio CD
When I was rather young, just four or five years old, my mother got me started listening to classical music by numerous composers. I can't help but think of the fond memories I have of those days with my mom as we listened together and she taught me to appreciate this fine music. Therefore I sincerely believe this CD is a good purchase for children who are just beginning to get acquainted with classical music.

The first part of the CD preps the child to be receptive to classical music by the use of some fun and silly lyrics (which are well written) to go along with the music excerpts. As the CD tracks progress the same music is played again--but this time without the silly lyrics--to get the child to hear the beauty of the music. I think this is a valuable tool to entice kids to listen to and appreciate classical music. Children need to be exposed to the arts and this CD helps accomplish that.

The quality of the sound is rather good and the CD has a pretty good range of musical excerpts to keep the children interested. The liner notes are fantastic! They will entertain young and old alike! GRIN

One thing, though: I suggest you listen to the audio clips from the CD on this web site to see for yourself if you like Richard Perlmutter's singing. There seems to be some disagreement amongst the listeners (the adult ones who wrote the reviews, at least) so remember to give the CD sound clips a listen.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By E. Kinnon on April 29, 2003
Format: Audio CD
For those reviewers concerned about this CD "dumbing down" classical music by the addition of clever lyrics, I say "LIGHTEN UP, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!" I am a professional musician whose children love this catchy, fun, educational CD which, by the way, stays true to the original (acoustic) orchestration without adding synthesizers or electronics. My 9 year old had memorized the entire CD in a very few days, and will no doubt remember the themes (and their composers) forever. His 7 year old brother is not far behind. I highly recommend this CD to anyone with children.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Amy Haaland on December 30, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I bought this CD for my kids (ages 13, 9,7, and 1) last July. They ALL love it and ask to listen to it all the time. They have memorized the lyrics and the older three know the names of the composers as well as the names of the original songs. My one year old loves "Hyden's Great Surprise" and recognizes it the moment it begins to play. Great music for kids of all ages. The voice quality of Richard Perlmutter is not great...but we love the CD anyway. A very enjoyable way to learn some great classical tunes.
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