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Musical Storybooks

Perfect for preschoolers, this program presents favorite storybooks illustrated with great music by the KSO String Quartet. Each program includes a craft activity, a narrated telling of the story with music, and interactive learning led by the musicians. Most programs are free of charge and held in libraries and family-friendly community venues. Preschool classes welcome!

This program is available to come to preschool and Young 5’s classrooms for a fee. Contact us for information.

Visit our Community Concerts & Events calendar to find a Musical Storybook near you!

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The Storybook Library

Musical Storybooks - Octopus's Garden

Octopus’s Garden by Ringo Star

This is a new program performed by a String Quartet (2 violins, viola, cello). We use the book Octopus’s Garden written by Ringo Star, and weave Beatles tunes throughout the story. Opportunities for audience participation and singing. Songs include: Yellow Submarine, With a Little Help from My Friends, Let It Be, When I’m 64, Hey Jude, All You Need Is Love, and Octopus’s Garden.

Musical Storybooks - Peter and the Wolf

Peter and the Wolf  by Prokofiev

This program is a symphonic fairy tale written by Sergei Prokofiev and uses a Woodwind Quintet (oboe, clarinet, french horn, bassoon, flute). Each character in the story has a musical theme that utilizes each instrument in a unique way. There is something for everyone in this program. We do have craft activities available that will appeal to younger audiences. 

Musical Storybooks - Octopus' Garden

Because by Mo Willems

This program is good for children of all ages and is performed by the string quartet. The story, by Mo Willems, is about a girl who heard a symphony orchestra and was inspired to become a composer herself. Built into the program is a lesson on conducting which can be adapted to the age and interest of the audience.

Musical Storybooks - Giraffes Can't Dance

Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andrae

This musical storybook is best for younger children. The story is by Giles Andreas, and follows our giraffe hero, Gerald, as he learns to dance to his own music. Performed by a special trio of Clarinet, Oboe, and Percussion, this program has a variety of music and musical styles. Props and a call to retell the story with the group are always a hit. Props can be pre-made or we can bring supplies and children can make the prop with the assistance of their grown-ups. We are also developing a String Quartet/Percussion version of this story.

Musical Storybooks - Hum and Swish

Hum and Swish by Matt Myers

This program by our storybook trio, best for younger children and families, tells the story of a young person who just wants to make something at the beach. She is continuously interrupted by strangers, friends and family and is challenged to express how she feels about these interruptions. This show includes an opportunity to think about how different music makes you feel.

Musical Storybooks - Last Stop on Market Street

Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Pena

This fun story evokes life in the city with a variety of musical styles. Performed by a special ensemble of Trumpet, Cello, Clarinet, Trombone, and Percussion, it follows a young boy and his Grandma as they ride the city bus through the streets. The music describes the various people and places they see along the way.

Musical Storybooks - Ferdinand the Bull

Ferdinand the Bull by Munro Leaf

Classic tale in the setting of music from Carmen performed by the String Quartet.

Musical Storybooks - They All Saw A Cat

They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel

Explore different ways to see and hear the world with the string quartet.

Family Fun Through Chamber Music

An all-ages program featuring musical favorites such as Peter & the Wolf and Carnival of the Animals, performed by KSO ensembles. These one-hour programs feature an Instrument Petting Zoo led by the featured musicians, craft activities, and a fun, narrated performance of the featured musical work. 

Musical Storybooks - Carnival of the Animals

Pictures at an Exhibition

Join the Brass Quintet for a journey into art - either existing or art of your creation.

Musical Storybooks - Pictures at an Exhibition

Pictures at an Exhibition

Join the Brass Quintet for a journey into art - either existing or art of your creation.


Musical Storybooks - Scott Joplin

Scott Joplin - KSO script

Performed by our largest ensemble, the KSO Pros on the Go, this program takes you on a journey in the life and music of composer Scott Joplin. From his Treemonisha Overture to the famous Maple Leaf Rag, we tell the story of how Scott Joplin became the King of Rag (Ragtime Music). The ensemble includes a full string quartet, oboe, clarinet, trombone, and percussion.