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Music Appreciation Through the Back Door is an ongoing series designed to help you integrate music appreciation lessons into your homeschool through fun and unexpected ways. In previous lessons we have discussed using Olympic Figure Skating and Disney-Pixar’s UP to teach your kids about classical music. Today we are talking about a more recent animated movie and one of my very favorite classical pieces for children…
From Edvard Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite, In the Hall of the Mountain King paints an auditory picture of the protagonist tip-toeing through a castle, desperate to hide from angry trolls. Cleverly, the people from the movie Trolls used the tune to highlight an adventurous scene in the movie.
A little background for you…
When playwright Henrik Ibsen penned a play on the life of Norwegian folk tale character Peer Gynt, he asked fellow countryman Edvard Grieg to add a soundtrack. It was a natural choice, since Edvard was the most famous composer in Norway (still is, to this day). Edvard went to work, but the music didn’t come easily to him. It took him three years to complete the project. But he didn’t give up, and I’m so glad! Otherwise, this piece wouldn’t exist.
Here’s where it gets fun. Justin Timberlake and the music powers-that-be morphed Grieg’s infectious In the Hall of the Mountain King into Hair Up, one of the soundtrack’s signature pieces. It is engaging for children to hear how fun and modern the tune sounds — my students are always shocked to find out Hair Up originated in a piece of classical music.
Enjoy this music! First, the original and then the Trolls version!
Enjoy teaching your kids this fun piece, with an animated twist!