Music for Youth: Musical Stories

Music can illustrate a story and evoke emotion. This unit explores some beloved classics that share tales through instruments in the orchestra.

The Tortoise and The Hare with Grieg
Selections from Peer Gynt Suites No. 1 & No. 2
Wedding Day at Troldhaugen
by Edvard Grieg

Follow Aesop’s classic fable of the iconic race between The Tortoise and The Hare. Featuring the Artistic Director of Main Stage Studios, Leah Wietig.


Learn how musical elements in selections from Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suites 1 & 2 help illustrate an iconic Aesop fable.
Grades 1-4 suggested

Peter and the Wolf
Pedro y el Lobo
by Sergei Prokofiev

Follow along with this classic musical tale, presented in both English and Spanish! Featuring the Artistic Director of Raíces Theatre Company, Victoria Pérez.


Identify the musical themes used to represent each character in both English and Spanish.
Grades 1-4 suggested

Carnival of the Animals
by Camille Saint-Saëns

Instruments are brought to life in this famous musical suite. Featuring two talent young pianists and introductions to each movement by assistant conductor Jaman E. Dunn.


Explore how a composer uses instruments and sounds to portray animals and illustrate a story.
Grades 1-4 suggested

Till Eulenspiegel, The Merry Prankster
by Richard Strauss & Franz Hasenöhrl

The misadventures and pranks of a young boy are chronicled in this tone poem by Strauss. Story told by bassist Brett Shurtliffe and illustrated with artwork by BPO musicians’ children.


Identify the musical scenes in Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks through this listening scavenger hunt.
Grades 1-8 suggested

Additional Resources



Choose and practice an instrument along with BPO musicians through the #PlayOnWNY series featuring 70+ videos.

High school student members with Principal Pops Conductor John Morris Russell

Symphony Hall Pass

Designed to be a flexible season concert pass for high school students to enjoy BPO performances at a discounted rate. Only $29 per student and free for Buffalo Public School students.


Music Education Resources

Access additional music education resources.

Sheryl 2

BPO Teaching Artists

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Kleinhans Summer

Education Sponsors

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