Most everyone has heard about the benefits that music has on young kids. Just type in “benefits of music for children” into any search engine and you will find articles and research about how music can help promote learning, develop language, encourage movement, help the development of gross motor skills and how music can even increase the attention span in kids. Enjoying live music is a way to expose your child to this creative art form and its benefits.
Here are ten ways to experience live music in your community for little or no cost.
1. Local School Concerts
These include: Band Concerts, Choir Concerts and Orchestra Concerts. These concerts usually take place around December and in the springtime. School Concerts are a great way to expose your child to music and since they take place at local schools these concerts are family friendly.
2. Local Free Concerts
Many cities and towns sponsor local music events for free. Check your local newspaper and keep an eye out for flyers in store windows or banners around town.
3. Community Bands, Orchestras and Choirs
Most communities have some sort of musical community group that gives concerts throughout the year. If you were in the band, orchestra or choir in high school you may even want to check into participating in one of these groups!
Many of the story times for younger kids incorporate music and movement. Talk to your librarian to see what is available and if your library does not offer a music class tell them you are interested in attending if they start one. You can also check out Live CD’s and Concert DVD’s from your library
5. Local Music Stores
Many Stores are more than willing to demonstrate instruments for your kids and if the store also gives lessons ask if they have student recitals that are open to the public. Some stores also give small chamber music concerts or piano recitals that the public can attend.
6. Music Websites
If you prefer to hear a live concert from the comfort of your home here are a few options:
Cincinnati public radio – http://www.cinradio.org
National Public Radio http://www.npr.org has a concert achieve with live video streams.
Invite a friend who has a musical instrument over and ask them to give a short concert. You would be surprised how many of your friends, coworkers, neighbors, babysitters and kids from the neighborhood are closet musicians who would love the opportunity to perform. If they need convincing just remind them that kids make great audiences as they are inquisitive and non judgmental.
Most early music was church music and today live music is still a part of most services.
Check with your local churches as many also sponsor free concerts throughout the year.
9. Local Restaurants/Coffee Shops
Many have guitarists or small bands that perform in the afternoons on weekends. Some may even have open mike performance times and you would be surprised how talented locals in your community can be.
10. Create your own Live Event at home.
Your kids can make up some silly songs to perform or you can craftily create some homemade instruments and have your own ensemble perform.
Live music is just that…Live singing, the Live playing of instruments or both. It can be enjoyed by people of all ages and is easier to find than you might think.