Listen to the Storyteller: A Trio of Musical Tales from Around the World

Overview

Celebrate the storytellers who tell the tales-- whether in words, pictures, music, or all three

A willful boy and a dancing witch go to clamorous lengths to win a magic fiddle.... A maiden imprisoned by her cold-hearted brother is rescued by the power of love.... A quest for knowledge leads three boys on an unforgettable journey....

Inspired by Afro-Caribbean, Celtic, and Native American lore, this engaging trio of original stories comes to ...

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Overview

Celebrate the storytellers who tell the tales-- whether in words, pictures, music, or all three

A willful boy and a dancing witch go to clamorous lengths to win a magic fiddle.... A maiden imprisoned by her cold-hearted brother is rescued by the power of love.... A quest for knowledge leads three boys on an unforgettable journey....

Inspired by Afro-Caribbean, Celtic, and Native American lore, this engaging trio of original stories comes to vivid life in stunning, collage-like illustrations by Kristen Balouch. In addition, each story has been interpreted through specially commissioned music (available on a separate CD or cassette from Sony Classical*) by three of today's most well known composers--Wynton Marsalis, Patrick Doyle, and Edgar Meyer. The result is a unique storytelling experience that also provides the most refreshing way in which to introduce children to classical music since Peter and the Wolf.

Kristen Balouch is a designer and illustrator. This is her first book for children. Wynton Marsalis is a Pulitzer prize-winning composer, musician, and author of two previous books on music: Sweet Swing Blues on the Road and Marsalis on Music (both Norton)

A collection of three original tales derived from diverse cultural and folktale traditions.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In her picture book debut, Balouch's electric compositions resembling cut-paper collage bring a distinctive verve to three original tales inspired by folklore. The artist's arresting, often swirling perspectives and bold use of solid colors make a lasting impression. First up in the text is Caribbean-influenced "The Fiddler and the Dancin' Witch," featuring a boy who faces a witch in a dancing, fiddling showdown in order to win a magic fiddle. The witch, sporting dreadlocks and kicking up her heels in a red skirt adorned with fish bones against an olive-green backdrop, is one of many memorable images here. In "The Lesson of the Land," a Native American boy on his vision quest learns the importance of respecting the earth. And from the European tradition, "The Face in the Lake" stars a beautiful maiden who comes to recognize that love truly is blind. Though the evocative tales each hold their own on the page, this volume serves as a companion to an audio CD from Sony Classical (see Children's Audio/Video, Aug. 9) containing musical interpretations of the stories by three composers and narration by Marsalis and actors Graham Greene and Kate Winslet. Enjoyed alone or with its audio counterpart, this mini-collection provides an imagination-stretching jaunt for readers and listeners. All ages. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature - Candace Deisley
Three magical folk tales from cultures only identified in the cataloging data as being from Native American, Celtic, and Afro-Caribbean origin, make up this charming collection. Only one, however, deals with music. The first, "The Fiddler and the Dancin' Witch" tells of a young boy who takes his father's fiddle without permission, and conjures up a witch. He must then play until she quits, unless he wants to lose the violin and his ears! His father comes to his aid, and the witch becomes a tornado, and disappears. "The Lesson of the Land" is a story of three boys who go into the woods to find their "visions from the animal spirits who would guide them through life." One is gluttonous, and eats three eggs whose origin the boys do not know. He slowly is turned into a snake, but the other two boys are found by their animal totems, and given wisdom. The third tale, "The Face in the Lake" tells of the defeat winter by spring. Although there is not any music in the latter two, the stories are so well told that there is great merit in this book. The colorful graphic illustrations show readers more about the cultures that the stories represent. Note: A companion musical CD and cassette, featuring scores plus story narration by Wynton Marsalis, Kate Winslet, and Graham Green is available separately from Sony Classical (SK/ST 60283).
Kirkus Reviews
Three original folktales take readers on a journey around the world. Drawn from the Celtic, Afro-Caribbean, and Native American cultures, these short stories deal with universal values. In "The Fiddler and the Dancin' Witch," Simeon learns the hard way that he should listen to his elders; in "The Lesson of the Land," two boys find their spirit vision but the third, for his heedless ways, becomes a snake; in "The Face in the Lake," Cruel Winter kidnaps his springtime-bearing sister Olwen, keeping her and the world in his icy grasp. Just how the last two stories fit in with the "musical tales" of the subtitle isn't clear, and Wynton Marsalis's introduction is generic at best. The text is uneven, but the brightly colored, detailed illustrations will appeal to children. (Folklore. 5-9)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780670880546
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/1/1999
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 9 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.52 (w) x 9.38 (h) x 0.45 (d)

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