Friday, January 22, 2010

The Great Musicians Series

Mozart, The Wonder Boy (Great Musicians Series)When I was growing up, there was a shelf in my dining room that held old children’s books. They were set apart from most of our children’s books, kept in another room. I don’t remember how I discovered them, but their difference made them special. They were older and thicker than the picture books. Less brightly-colored. Hardcover. To me, these were the serious kids books, and they were a little daunting. But I went and explored anyway, and discovered mysterious riches: "Arabian Nights", "A Child’s Garden of Verses", several opera and ballet stories, and two composer biographies.

Joseph Haydn The Merry Little Peasant (Great Musicians Series)Mozart, The Wonder Boy (Great Musicians Series) and Joseph Haydn The Merry Little Peasant (Great Musicians Series) had belonged to my dad when he was a child. They had lots of pictures, but they were chapter books. I had never read biographies before, and but these felt accessible, especially since they focused on the composers' childhood . I could tell the books hadn’t been written in my time, but they were interesting and compelling, and turned out to have a lot of information in them.

I was so excited to discover recently that these books are back in print, and that they were part of a series!

Ludwig Beethoven and the Chiming Tower Bells (Great Musicians Series)Zeezok Publishing has reprinted the Great Musician Series, unabridged, and with the original covers (I love the retro look, don’t you?) They also offer companion CDs which contain audio files, coloring pages and printable sheet music for each chapter if you want to go more into depth.

Handel at the Court of Kings (Great Musicians Series)Sebastian Bach, The Boy from Thuringia (Great MusicianS Series)
Frederic Chopin, Son of Poland, Early Years (Great Musicians Series)Frederic Chopin, Son of Poland (Great Musicians Series)
The Young Brahms (Great Musicians Series)Robert Schumann: And Mascot Ziff
Franz Schubert & His Merry Friends (Great Musicians Series)Edward MacDowell and His Cabin in the Pines (Great Musicians Series)
Stephen Foster and His Little Dog Tray (Great Musicians Series)


  1. YES! We've read a couple of these and really enjoyed them! I knew there were four or five, but didn't realize there are THIS many! Are some of them by authors other than Opal Wheeler?

  2. All of them list Opal Wheeler as one of the authors, but most of them were co-written with Mary Greenwalt, Sybil Deucher, or Christine Price


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