Sharp, Ian

Classical Music’s Evocation of the Myth of Childhood
2001 0-7734-7411-0
“Ian Sharp’s book fills an important gap in the music education literature: the significance of important music by important composers and the essence of the childhood experience. Sharp’s book avoids being yet another teaching methodology. Instead, it links a thorough analysis of childhood qua childhood with music expressly about childhood. . . . Sharp first offers a comprehensive psychological and sociological study of childhood. Then, with sensitivity, skill and insight, Sharp shows. . . how music can express meaning that is accessible to children. This is followed by careful analysis of music by mainstream composers intended specifically either for children or about the theme of childhood. These include Robert Schumann, Benjamin Britten, Chopin, Kodaly, Bartok, Bizet, and a host of others. The analyses of the works of these composers should satisfy any music theorist. . . . In addition to classical works, Sharp generalizes his thesis across traditional aspects of music education: lullabies, folk songs, berceuse, rhymes and songs. Buy the way, Sharp’s discussion of musical games and children in opera is a peach! Music educators will welcome this work as a needed contribution to the literature. . . .should be made required reading in all university music education foundations courses.” – Harold E. Fiske