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(True confession: after I finished writing this post, I had a sudden remembrance. Turns out, I have already talked about one of these. I suppose it was inevitable I would repeat myself at some point. #facepalm)
Thus begins my four favorite months of the year. To be real, September is still pretty much summer where I live…but it doesn’t stop me from organizing my scarves, wearing fall colors, and eating all the pumpkin things.
I am every cliche of the person who loves all things fall.
I posted our September Playlist last week to help you get some new classical music flowing in your home this month, and today’s lesson will help you break down three of the pieces on the list: Mars, Venus, and Jupiter, from Gustav Holst’s The Planets.
Holst was a British composer who was obsessed with astrology, and he wrote The Planets as a seven-piece suite aligning with the astrological signs. An explanation on why seven, not nine: no Earth and no Pluto…the first isn’t associated with an astrological sign and the latter was not discovered at the time…and, turns out, isn’t a planet anyway.
Now, I hear what some of you are saying: “Kristi, I don’t believe in astrology and I don’t want teach my kids about it.” I agree. And I think you can enjoy the music without getting into all that. Plus, Holst’s version of astrology wasn’t really the same as what we think of today. Most all children have some understanding of outer space and the planets, so it’s just fun for them to see how the pieces are named after different planets. I leave it at that.
Here are my three favorites of the seven. (Incidentally, Holst did not write the music in distance-from-the-sun order, which really bothers my ISFJ/Enneagram 6, which needs order and rules to define my very existence. I digress.)
Here we go!
Mars, The Bringer of War (note the big drums at the beginning – very “impending war”)
Venus, The Bringer of Peace (just as it is named…very peaceful)
Jupiter, The Bringer of Jollity (take special note of the contrast from 2:54-4:40 – it is a gorgeous melody)
These are great pieces to have playing in the background when you are doing schoolwork – especially anything science related. Just teaching your children that music can be inspired by and connected to other subjects broadens their thinking in wonderful ways.