Looking for a fun way to spend an hour with your kiddo? Sid Bowfin’s super-fun “crazy classics” concert had my toddler rocking out
When your toddler gets into the car and asks to hear Mozart, you know you’ve done something right.
In this particular instance, it wasn’t so much me as classical violinist Sid Bowfin, who’d spent the previous hour delighting kids of all ages with his upbeat, interactive takes on classics like Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, Ravel’s Bolero, and Beethoven’s Ode to Joy.
Described as “part recital, part stand-up comedy, and part clown routine”, the performance from ACT3 International – currently on at the Drama Centre in the National Library Building – is a fab way to introduce children to classical music in a fun and not-at-all-stuffy setting.
A classically trained violinist from the UK, Sid did an admirable job getting kids involved in the show, whether he enlisted one particularly spirited boy (who’d previously informed him that he was holding his bow wrong!) to count 47 measures in The Four Seasons, or bringing kids on stage to balance on one foot. There was lots of call-and-response as well; my daughter loved when he asked for requests (naturally she wanted to hear “The Wheels on the Bus”).
With nothing but a magic bag of tricks (props he pulled out along the way, like a sailor’s hat to play a pirate jig, a cardboard pizza slice to introduce the pizzicato technique, or a flowing red wig so he could take on Vivaldi’s Italian persona – totally hilarious, by the way), Sid Bowfin kept the kids in the audience completely engaged throughout the show – and parents were laughing, too.
He interacted nimbly and cheekily with the kids – most of whom seemed to be in the 4 to 7 age range – and totally impressed me with his unflappability. At first I felt self-conscious about my 2.5-year-old folding and unfolding her seat and loudly telling me “He’s wearing a bowtie!” while he played a violin solo, but found it refreshing how unfazed he seemed by his lively audience.
That’s not to say kids were squirming; even Maggie and her 2.5-year-old friend who came along absolutely loved the show and listened intently right till the end, a rousing finale of The Cancan in which they spontaneously ran down to the stage to start dancing along with older kids who’d done the same. (Check out the cuteness on our Instagram if you haven’t already!).
By that time the black box theatre at the Drama Centre was well and truly rocking with everyone in the audience enthusiastically clapping along. I honestly felt the same spirit and love of music that I’d experienced just the night before at the Guns N’ Roses concert. No matter if it’s Slash on guitar or Sid Bowfin on his violin, encouraging a love of music from the start is the name of the game, and on this end Sid Bowfin is a smashing success. Take your kiddos and they’re sure to have a rollicking good time, mama!
When’s the show? Sid Bowfin will be performing daily through 12 March, 2017 (sometimes with multiple shows in a day).
Where is the concert? At the Drama Centre Black Box Theatre, 100 Victoria Street, Level 5, National Library Building, Singapore 188064.
Who’s it for? Recommended age is 4 and up, though my not-quite-3-year-old thoroughly enjoyed herself. Children under 1 will not be admitted.
How much? Tickets are $28 (child or adult) on weekdays, $38 (child or adult) on weekends. Book through Sistic.