Bach to Baby: The soulful cello (3.5*)

bachRuth’s 3.5* review:

Bach to Baby is a concert series from the south of England, performing live classical music for kids.  On this occasion the programme included Chopin, Debussy, Dvorak and Bach performed on piano and cello.

This is the most expensive event I’ve taken BabyStevenson to so far, and one that I specially took the day off work to go to as it was only available on this day.

The event was held in a lovely church which was beautiful.  However.  I think they were not expecting such a good turn out as a lot of time was spent directing people in and parking prams.  I was sent to the front with my pram.  The seating choices were either a pew or on the floor at the front.  Neither seemed ideal for wrangling an almost-toddler but I went with sitting on the floor as I felt he’d enjoy it more if he could watch the cello.  So I was sitting up front with the child and pretty much holding him down by the trousers to prevent him from crawling off / chewing cables / stealing food and toys from other children / climbing on the stage.  And the organisers were still ushering people in… 15 mins after the advertised start time…  So having been there ten minutes early I was already dealing with a very bored child.  15 minutes late is a long time for babies, pretty much their attention span really.  Which means I’d exhausted my distraction plans by the time it even started.  Then just as it started I realised that as my pram was at the front I was trapped for the full hour.

Actually it was fine, the concert was very pleasant and I do think BabyCyclops enjoyed and was interested in the cello because he stood up against the railing and watched it for at least half of the time.

National Museum of Scotland Free Fringe Music (3*)

2015-08-14Ruth’s 3* review:

The National Museum of Scotland has a different performance of free live music every day during the Fringe.

This was a pleasant occasion with chairs set out in one of the museum through-spaces and on this day we saw a performance from a soprano with piano accompaniment (Emma Versteeg and Maryam Sherhan).  The selection of music was quite serene.

It started off busy and with all the chairs occupied we positioned ourselves at the back edge of the crowd, but this meant that BabyStevenson wasn’t too near the singer and so I’m not sure he noticed that the music was live and he was pretty restless.  He joined in the clapping though!  I walked him a bit closer which occupied him a little and he did take some interest in the performers, but I wouldn’t say he would have been welcome to crawl about at the front so we just did a circuit behind the chairs a few times.  I felt that we were in the way even doing this.  One nice man smiled and waved to him.

So on the whole BabyStevenson wasn’t particularly interested.  No reflection on the performers, but I don’t think this type and setup of performance is for him just now.  He needs something more lively and/or visual, or with space to rampage about.  Good to know.  People wandered in and out leaving more space at the back, so I let BabyStevenson roam freely with the music in the background and that was quite nice.

The National Museum of Scotland is great for kids and we had a bit of a look at some of the displays and a roam about in the main hall.  All required facilities are right there and there are (tiny) lifts to get to the floor you need.

Idina Menzel (4*)

Ruth’s review:

After a client meeting in Morecambe I got back to Edinburgh quick sharp as Ian and I had tix to see Idina Menzel in concert at the Usher Hall. What a legend Idina Menzel is, star of Broadway (and latterly the West End) and most famous for her roles in Rent and Wicked. I love Wicked, without wishing to get too mushy the story and the songs really speak to me. So it was very exciting to see the original Elpheba sing Elpheba’s songs. Oh yeah, and she’s in Glee too as the main character’s mother. Don’t forget Glee.

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