First published by the BBC (October 11, 2011) ☛ Every newborn baby in Scotland will receive a classical CD to inspire a love of music. The Royal Scottish National Orchestra (RSNO), together with the Association of Registrars of Scotland, announced they will be giving away a disc to each baby born in Scotland throughout all of next year.
The CD will be distributed to all 220 offices across Scotland and is expected to reach up to 60,000 families. The compilation titled Astar (Gaelic for “journey”), features Scottish songs, nursery rhymes and classical works. The CD was recorded by the RSNO and RSNO Junior Chorus, led by music director Peter Oundjian. He said: “When I was an infant my godfather gave me a tiny record player, I would place it under the family piano and put on my prized recording of Peter and the Wolf. It became my sanctuary, a place where I knew I could find joy. I have found that the power and beauty of music can truly transform lives and I seriously hope that the recipients of Astar enjoy many hours of shared pleasure to this wonderful music.” Recent studies have shown that listening to music has a positive impact on young children’s cognitive development, the RSNO said. Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, said: “This delightful project will encourage an early introduction to the joy of music for Scotland’s youngest children. It will help to give babies the best possible start in life, strengthen the building of parent-child bonds, and encourage families to use music to enhance learning in the home.”
FEELguide NOTE: I think this is such a great story. I’m a diehard proponent of The Mozart Effect (the science that indicates that listening to Mozart’s music may induce a short-term improvement on the performance of certain kinds of mental tasks known as spatial-temporal reasoning). Although I would add that it’s not solely Mozart’s music that has the potential to wire babies’ brains in profound ways. If I were to compile my own classical music album for children it would have to include these specific pieces from Bach (LISTEN HERE), Ann Southam (LISTEN HERE), Lars-Erik Larsson (CLICK HERE), and renowned Canadian pianist Angela Hewitt’s rendition of Francois Couperin’s extraordinary “Les Barricades Mystérieuses” which I fell in love with the first time I watched Terrence Malick’s The Tree Of Life. You can listen to Hewitt’s rendition below, and learn more about the fascinating complex patterns embedded in “Les Barricades Mystérieuses” by CLICKING HERE.