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2012 Classical Music for Kids

Johann Sebastian Bach
Music genius, live!


The American Classical Orchestra presents the music of eighteenth century composer Johann Sebastian Bach in an interactive educational program for schools. Horacio Franco, world-renowned recorder virtuoso from Mexico, and violinist Joan Plana, a student at the Juilliard Historic Performance Program, will join ACO conductor and harpsichordist Thomas Crawford. Maestro Crawford will appear in costume as the great composer. 

The Classical Music for Kids program engages the students in several ways:
  • Live performance of Bach's famous masterpieces, including the A minor violin concerto, Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring, Air for the G String, Harpsichord Prelude in C Major from The Well-Tempered Clavier, Cello Suite in G Major, and recorded samples from the Brandenburg Concertos and Toccata and Fugue in D Minor.
  • Live demonstration and teaching of Bach's genius at counterpoint.  Students hear the subject melody and follow how it modulates and transforms.
  • A musical game is played by all, wherein students listen to sample tunes and choose the best one.  Then they hear the winner made into a brief composition with 18th century improvisation technique used by the musicians.

A Teacher's Guide is sent to all participating schools so that the music teacher may prepare the students for the assembly program.  It includes historical background on the extraordinary life of Bach, music sheets for singing, and an audio CD of the featured music. 

Our dedication to providing educational outreach programs extends from children to adult learners. Pre-concert lectures, symposia and master classes are offered to enlighten adult learners and to pass on the original techniques to a new generation of musicians.


Classical Music for Kids® (CMK) was created by the American Classical Orchestra as an education and out-reach program to introduce children to the pleasures of classical music in an interactive, age-appropriate, entertaining format.  Since CMK’s creation in 1999, the Orchestra has reached more than 200,000 students and their families with its in-school and family matinee performances.


With Horacio Franco,
Mexican recorder virtuoso
Herr Bach will appear at this concert!

Bach Brandenburg Concerto No. 4
Air for the G String
Vivaldi Winter from the Four Seasons
Vivaldi Concerto for Two Trumpets
Handel Watermusik excerpts
with baroque dance
Non-subscription event
– Single ticket sales available $8.00

horacio Franco

2pm Matinee Family Concert
Saturday, February 11, 2012 2pm
Johann Sebastian Bach LIVE!
New York Society for Ethical Culture
2 West 64th Street, at Central Park W

Call the ACO Box office for more details
 Box Office: 212.362.2727 






American Classical Orchestra was chosen from a national pool of candidates in 2002 to receive the Early Music America’s “Bringing History Alive” award.  This award is given to the music organization exemplifying excellence in introducing classical music to primary- and secondary-school students.  In 2006, the ACO received the prestigious National Endowment for the Arts award, “Learning in the Arts for Children and Youth.”

The ACO is one of our country’s few orchestras performing on period, or historic instruments; and we are dedicated to fostering and preserving the great music literature of the Baroque, Classical, and early Romantic eras.  Under the direction of founder Maestro Thomas Crawford, the ACO has been performing for over 20 years, and we have become a leading orchestra in the New York Metropolitan and Tri-State area.

Classical Music for Kids® consists of two inter-related parts: live public performances intended for a family audience and an education and out-reach program held in school classrooms.  The in-school program is part of our coordinated approach of partnering with the schools and their teachers, both to teach the children classical music and to prepare them for the program to be presented to a broader audience in a concert hall.

The participating teacher receives a curriculum guide that complements the repertoire at the public performances.  Prior to the concert, the students learn about the music in class and attend an in-school interactive performance, usually led by Maestro Thomas Crawford and guest artists.  The students learn how to attend a live performance and are introduced to the period instruments, composers, musicians and music excerpts from the program.

We bring history alive for students by recreating performances similar to those given in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries.  The students learn the differences between the period instruments and their modern counterparts, and they hear the beautiful music as it was intended to be heard.

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At School
Thomas Crawford with recorder virtuoso Horacio Franco at Public School 83
Soprano Eileen Clark “Queen of the Night,” Thomas Crawford as Mozart, and 4th grade participants
Trying Violin
Trying a violin at ACO Instrument Petting Zoo