Thursday, September 08, 2011

Tschaikovsky's "Pathetique": Rated PG

After the kids come home from school, we try to have a bit of quiet time where they can rest or read in their beds. They usually enjoy this personal time to unwind, particularly since it's generally followed by a snack.

During today's quiet time, I put on a classical CD without giving it much thought: Tschaikovsky's Symphony No. 6, "Pathetique." After about fifteen minutes, Talia slipped out of bed and asked me, "Mom, are we allowed to listen to this music? I'm scared. Does it have lots of violence in it?"

Needless to say, I quickly switched Tschaikovsky's impassioned Romantic music for some more Classical classical. Still, I was struck by how deeply the music resonated within Talia, evoking emotions strong enough that she could articulate them. I'm also glad to know that she would voluntarily filter music that made her feel uncomfortable, just as she might walk away from a violent movie.

We don't really listen to much heavy metal or rap in our home, and we certainly steer clear of music with foul language. This experience, however, has helped me realize that even if we are listening to the New York Philharmonic, I need to be engaged and guide my children when they are listening to music designed for a more mature audience.


Erin said...


Jenika said...

That's fantastic that she took action. There was a lot of emotional turmoil behind the writing of that piece, so amazing how sensitive her spirit was to it. I applaud you for both exposing your kids to the classics, but also raising them in a way that they walk away when they are uncomfortable.

Julie L said...

Good observations. Hard to believe she's the same child who ripped into her "human leg hot dog". Hahahaha