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HOT: MSO Classic Kids 1: I Can Play Anything with Jay Laga’aia

mso classic kids

MSO Family Classic Kids are a series of concerts put on by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra for families which aim to introduce children to the wonderful world of live orchestral music.

The 45 minute concerts are recommended for Grades K-2, which means at 3 years old Lady AB is only just old enough to attend.

The concerts are held at the Iwaki Auditorium at ABC’s Southbank Centre. It’s a small space with floor seating on the bottom level and stadium seats on the upper level and the tickets are general admission, so it’s first come first served. We arrived 10 minutes early to find the whole floor already taken up so we headed up the stairs. In retrospect the higher seats are actually a better option anyway because the kids had more space to move around and they could see all the musicians and instruments.

For this particular concert there was a special guest, the affable Jay Laga’aia of Play School and Star Wars fame. He and the orchestra’s conductor Benjamin Northey led the colourful orchestra (helpfully dressed in primary colours according to their instrument’s family) through a program of well-known classic musical works, popular children’s songs and songs written by Jay. Kids were encouraged to clap, sing, do actions, dance and some lucky ones were even invited on the conductor’s podium to conduct the orchestra!

The performance was really enjoyable and there were lots of happy chatter as people were exiting. The musicians obviously enjoyed the experience too, smiling and bopping along to the music when they weren't playing.

Lady AB was able to concentrate for most of it but it was good that she wasn’t locked to her seat. Forty-five minutes was definitely long enough for her attention span. I noticed that some people had brought younger children which I don’t really recommend. For instance, I think I would have spent the whole time chasing Baby 2.0 around the room and keeping him out of trouble.

Tickets for MSO Family Classic Kids are a very reasonable $18 for adults and $12 for children. We decided to subscribe to the whole season of three concerts which meant that tickets were $17 for adults and $10 for children plus we received one adult and one child Three Park Pass for Phillip Island. We’re looking forward to their next two concerts on Saturday 31 May and Saturday 25 October.

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra also run a free program of music concerts of 0-5 year olds called MSO Jam for Juniors. Read our review here.

cropped Kristyna Hess Lockdown Portraits x

Joyce Watts is a former intellectual property, IT and media lawyer turned serial entrepreneur.

As well as being the founder of TOT: HOT OR NOT she helps businesses with their SEO, email marketing & social media as BrightSmart.com.au; she owns an online bike store CycleStyle.com.au and develops and produces creative experiences for families via WheelieGoodFun.com. She used to publish another popular lifestyle and food blog called MEL: HOT OR NOT The decisive guide to Melbourne.

She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband, two children and seven bikes.

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