Welcome to the Opera: Discover the Enchanting World of Opera with Mozart’s The Magic Flute

 
5.0 (2)
 
0.0 (0)
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Welcome to the Opera: Discover the Enchanting World of Opera with Mozart’s The Magic Flute
Author(s)
Age Range
4+
Release Date
October 10, 2023
ISBN
978-1523516964
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From the author of Welcome to the Symphony and Welcome to Jazz, this musical picture book introduces children to opera with 12 sound interactive buttons and an illustrated performance of Mozart's The Magic Flute.

Join three adorable dogs for a performance of Mozart’s beloved masterpiece The Magic Flute in this illustrated introduction to opera—with 12 sound buttons! As the story unfolds readers learn about the essential parts of opera—voice parts like soprano and tenor; vocal techniques like recitative and melisma; arias, the orchestra, the chorus, sets, costumes, plot, and more.

Plus, 12 interactive sound buttons let readers hear examples of the musical concepts as they read: a soprano sings a heartfelt aria, a powerful bass sings recitative, and the chorus harmonizes during the dramatic finale!

Welcome to the Opera is the third title in music educator Carolyn Sloan’s successful Welcome to… sound chip picture book series that introduces classic musical genres to young readers.

Editor reviews

2 reviews
Engaging Interactive Story
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
N/A
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
Welcome to the Opera is a wonderfully engaging interactive story to learn more about the Opera. The characters go see Mozart’s The Magic Flute. This story has themes and illustrations that are fun for the preschooler and complex enough that an elementary-age child would also enjoy it. This book could inspire children to learn more about Opera, this specific play, theater, and music.
Along the way, we learn all about the elements of Opera and can hear snippets from the play to understand the definitions. The vocabulary in the story and the sound clips make for an engaging way to learn more. The illustrations are bright and colorful and the numbered sound board makes it easy to follow along and strengthens a desire to learn more. This book is wonderful for music teachers and parents to start the foundation for singing and a love for the Opera. I like that there is an on/off switch on the back to preserve the battery when not in use. Overall, this author has taken a complex set of vocabulary and made it understandable and fun for very young children.

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delightful and educational interactive picture book
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
WELCOME TO THE OPERA is an absolutely delightful and educational picture book. The book features three dogs who are visiting the Opera to see The Magic Flute. As the book walks young readers through the story, they learn not only about the engaging plot of The Magic Flute, but also the important elements of opera. The book teaches about the elements of storytelling like plot, costumes, and sets, as well as the features of the music, such as the orchestra, voice types (eg, soprano, alto, tenor), and choruses (eg, quintets, the finale). The approachable language, colorful illustrations, and sound buttons that demonstrate these elements add to the experience of this fantastic read!

What I loved: There is so much for young readers to learn about opera in the book. The setting is particularly engaging with the plot of The Magic Flute laid out for the reader along with the three dogs who are watching and learning about the opera along with the reader. All the context you would need to appreciate the music and story is included in the book. Asides to explain key concepts feature approachable and easy to understand language that teaches complex elements to little ones with ease. The sound buttons are particularly fantastic with recordings that help to demonstrate the voice types and key concepts in ways that make it come to life. These are a particularly powerful feature, making the book interactive and truly educational - as the best way to learn about music is to hear it.

The opera that was chosen has a storyline that children can understand easily and appreciate along the way, with the examples building on how the story is told in the opera. Brief background on the opera itself is given and helpful to set the stage for the magic to come. The characters illustrated throughout the story are emotive and fantastically costumed, so it really brings the story to life in its own way. The images are detailed and highly enjoyable throughout. The dogs that communicate will also hold a lot of appeal to young readers with their own questions and jokes in the book, adding a bit of a fictional element. Children who are familiar with this series will also be excited to see the cats from WELCOME TO JAZZ at the end of book, also enjoying the opera.

What left me wanting more: As a small thing, the buttons are only pressable underneath the actual number rather than in the middle of the box dedicated to them. However, children can figure out and get used to this quickly. Additionally, there are no volume controls for the music, so it can sound pretty loud (but it does notably have an on-off switch, which is great for storage to prevent random button presses).

Final verdict: With interactive sound, lush illustrations, and engaging text, WELCOME TO THE OPERA is a delightful and educational book that will charm young readers as they learn about opera through the story of The Magic Flute. Highly recommend checking this one out!
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