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The Joy of Classical Music: A Guide for You and Your Family Hardcover – October 10, 1992
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From Publishers Weekly
Drawing on her own experiences with classical music, the author, the former wife of senator Ted Kennedy, provides a manual for the uninitiated. She gives suggestions for ways to make classical music a part of daily life, tips on what to expect at a concert, advice about music lessons, guidance on getting children involved with classical music, and an appendix that includes lists of popular classical pieces, representative prices of concert tickets and an elementary bibliography. Kennedy, who studied piano as a child and later continued her involvement with classical music by inviting well-known musicians to Washington, D.C., social gatherings and by becoming an amateur performer and narrator, is obviously earnest, but her book is annoyingly superficial, especially the glib chapters on the history of classical music and dance. Her despair at the low esteem to which classical music has fallen in contemporary American life is heartfelt, and she makes a strong plea for the reintroduction of this music in the public schools.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
JOAN KENNEDY has been playing the piano since childhood; she has participated in benefit performances with orchestras around the country as both a pianist and a narrator. She also holds a master’s degree in education and has taught music to children. Counting many musicians among her friends, she frequently attends concert, opera, and ballet performances. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
HOW DID TEDDY GIVE HER UP FOR THAT vICKI R EGGIE WOMAN SHE HAS nothing on Joan Kennedy back in the day
Parents will appreciate the suggestions for exposing children to classical music in a manner that will not alienate.
Joan Kennedy gets in her own way trying to convince the reader that others see her as a classical music expert. Arguably, the author fancies herself more interesting than the purported subject of classical music. The actual content of the book does not proportionately match the title itself and the description on the back and flaps. This bait and switch indicates a total lack of respect for the reader's intelligence and financial situation.
This book is an autobiography, not a guide to understanding classical music. This book is in no way "A Guide for You and Your Family" to learn about classical music... other than the part it plays in the lives of the Kennedy family. The bulk of the Table of Contents is broken down into themes that relate to the author's life and not music. There are 16 pages of photographs of Joan Kennedy and her famous family and no pictures involving classical musicians outside her circle. Even the chapter that seemed most promisingly about music--A Short History of Classical Music--is cluttered with "I".
The elements regarding classical music promised on the flaps and back are most likely mentioned in passing. However, to suggest that classical music is the focus of the book is misleading.
Due to the lack of objectivity and deception--either conscious or subconscious--of the author, I do not trust her as a valid source of information on any subject... including the influence that music has played within the Kennedy family. Therefore, this book is not recommended for anyone.