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I wanted it pedagogically. Our biography about Johann Sebastian Bach. For children. And I am serious: We believe, more fathers, mothers, grandfathers, grandmothers, godfathers and godmothers, aunts, uncles plus teachers, especially music teachers come along this page, than ... children. They google differently. For kids, the FAQ on "Bach on Bach" are rather productive. However, they don't find my book, which I wrote in particular for children ... definitely not with this kind of googling.
First of all: Would you have realized that this whole page is promotion? That is really important because I would be really happy if we could excite you for my book, that is to say, the biography about Bach for children and you would buy a copy. However, because this page is not only no edited content, plus children might "come along here, too", that is why we want to make it explicitly clear that all this text on this page is an ad. Back to the subject again.
It's just not possible: A page for grownups on a website for children. Well, you realize, there just is such a thing. It is here and there are even more pages. Here you find information for parents and grandparents, for godparents, for uncles and aunts and – it goes without saying – for teachers and in particular for music teachers.
Actually, my whole project started like this: Late, very late in my life, my way led me to Johann Sebastian Bach. My access to this subject, however, was rather uncomfortable. Uncomfortable for the reason, because every aspect, which I tried to understand, was no success.
The first biography which I started reading, was unbelievably boring. The second was much too detailed. Until I found – much later – the perfect one and dead right. The same happened to me with Bach's music. Actually an initial "Best of Bach" was my first trial. And it was a bad letdown. Next was the Bach genealogy, that is to say, the genealogy of the Bach family of musicians: It is endless complicating. Even to understand, who is the father of whom, who is a grandfather, a brother or a grandchild is as challenging as can be.
Meanwhile, I work for more than 35 years in my job, and my job is to explain complicating stuff to an audience, which visits a company like a brewery or a newspaper publishing company. I do the same for cities and in the tourism industry. To make it short, I present information in an entertaining way. Entertainment is "my world". It has to be nice, short, exciting ... plus I always prefer "easy going".
That is how the idea of the "Bach on Bach" internet project came up, of which this website "Johann Sebastian Bach for Children" is a part of. 2012 we built the first pages of the main website and this website on which you are currently reading is one of six more in the collective.
So, "Bach on Bach" is – even after 4 years – still "really fresh" and sort of under construction. However, it will grow fast. Every day. Every week. Every month. Every year.
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First it has to be fun. After that, it's about content. However: It's about both, after all. Today it's a combination of both fun and excitement with a high learning factor: My Bach Biography for Children.
A biography about Bach for children was very important to me. I would have loved to present one – not written by me – as worth to buy it. Now, tastes are different and I didn't like anything, what was already around as a biography about Bach for children. Not for the age, which I had in mind. With this awareness I was looking for a while, better I was looking for many months, however, I didn't find a writer. Plus I didn't find a publishing company which I could excite, to convince one of their authors. Until my own family said, I could do such a thing myself. Meanwhile, the German version is long ready. And it's printed. In its first edition. Plus you can buy it: In books stores, at Amazon and of course – we like that best – in the shop "Bach 4 You". An interesting idea is if you try to learn German, buy it, check on the words and make this little work a destination for your efforts to deal with German. My most important ambition: You have to have a goal when you try to learn a foreign language: You have to have German friends, you should plan to visit Germany you should want to read a biography about Bach. The fact that this biography is for kids, is no disadvantage at all, not for Germans and even more not for all other languages speaking folks. As the text is easy going and not complicated. And so is the content.
This biography about Bach for children is written exactly according to those mentioned premises and priorities above: Most important is, there comes fun with it and it has to be exciting. Yes, it comes with the risk, maybe to "transport a little less important material". Main goal, however, is, not to frustrate kids. Okay, the facts have to be researched to perfection and they are certainly. You are right: That is a sort of strange approach, to write a book. However it's similar to the task, how to teach history the best way: It depends, how you "wrap" it. As you could hop from one historical date to the next without any emotion. Or you construct it exciting. I have experienced both ways during my time in school.
More clearly? My goal is not to excite young folks for Johann Sebastian Bach. My goal is, not to frustrate kids and young adults at all, who seem to approach Bach just rudimental. Plus after that, I don't want to drown them in much too much information after a first encounter. To destroy nothing, that is the result of my own life experience. Because I had a really hard time, to experience Bach's work a second time after the first trial went so wrong.
Why don't you – as an English speaking person – listen to a few minutes of the audiobook of the biography? It might be even easier than reading German text. And you know that listening and understanding a foreign language is always easier than to speak it. On the other hand, you could try to read the first two or three pages of chapter one. Then you would know, whether managing to understand the whole biography would be too much of a good thing for you.
Just a reminder: This page is ... commercial = advertisement = promotion!
Don't worry. Not all 33 picture themes (... or you might call them photo themes) are that much suitable for children. However, kids can choose their picture themes coming with the 33 music works on their own. Of course, grownups can, too. 33 works of Johann Sebastian Bach in a combination with 33 photo themes that is a total of 1,089 videos. For you, for Bach starters, for Bach fans and in particular for children.
You might think: What a question? What kind of music from Bach is suitable for children? Plus after all, why has it to be suitable for children?
The answer is pretty simple: The faster you recognize a melody from a work of Johann Sebastian from "somewhere" and the faster you can whistle it, the more convenient and the more melodic it is ... the lesser is the distance to music, that children and teens like and what modern music is about. The moment, when kids find out, that this music – classical music – might be cool, too – and it's really not mainstream when it comes to the taste of an average school class – the more probable is it that a child will remain interested in classical music later. It's possible actually in two "disciplines". That is firstly the demand for ambitious music, whether it's listening to the many Bach choirs, in the world or the Bach orchestras close to their hometown or via Ton Koopmann on a CD or music conducted by Sir Elliott Gardiner (... both are two examples only). The second option is related to the kind of the work. Why don't we begin with works, you can whistle or bumble? With works related to the motto "... well, this is from Bach actually?" From that point on, you can discover the whole world of Bach's music. You find out, that one person likes the Brandenburg Concerts best, but he or she doesn't like the cantatas of Bach. Or you find out, that you might like to listen to the St. Matthew Passion every Christmas, however not the H Minor Mass.
Here is a theme, which might be less perfect for children. However, may be you have some fun with it. Of course some combinations "music + photos" don't make sense at all. However, some combinations fit perfectly. Why don't you combine – for instance – Bach's Coffee Cantata with the photos "coffee motives"? Or alternatively the Brandenburg Concerts with all of the palaces photos and photo themes about great historic cities. The "Ave Maria" (... yes, you are right, Bach didn't do it alone) matches perfectly to the cemetery Père Lachaise in Paris, France. Plus the Christmas Oratorio is perfectly matching to the winter photos.
The internet portal about Johann Sebastian Bach, that is to say, "Bach on Bach" considers. Because what is true for children is as well valid for all those, which are not Bach connoisseurs and experts in the matter of Bach, and want to approach the theme of the classical composer.
So on "Bach on Bach" not the most beautiful and not the greatest works are implemented in their short form, but the most favorable and most valued. And that is ... actually a big difference.
Nowhere else – except on this particular website – is a selection so consequently not decided after the taste of one individual, but by the taste of a gigantic group of Bach lovers all over the world. Google and Youtube can't be wrong. Plus the consequent collection is so free of any compromise like it's just the complete edition.
With my collection of the 33 popular and well-known works of Johann Sebastian Bach, no personal criteria is included ... these are not my favorite works of Bach. When a collection is put together on a CD, which you can buy somewhere, it's definitely different. With that, the collection depends on the ability of the musicians, the level of difficulty of the pieces, the proposition of the conductor, the cost to buy the music. To make it short: There are always some compromises. And they are definitely considerable, in particular, if it is the first CD with Bach's music, which you meet in your life.
"Bach on Bach" is always and mostly a springboard, to dive much, much more into the matter and the life of Johann Sebastian Bach. Plus and actually in particular for children. With this Bach project you find the perfect Bach short biography, exactly in the length of your desire (... actually there is a Bach short biography in 6, 9, 15, 25 and in 60 minutes for me for you), you learn interesting stuff which – actually – is unimportant, you may start your way to Bach from here and you may learn about many sub-themes regarding the family of musicians from Thuringia.
That is why "Bach on Bach" offers a portion of Bach's music only as videos. So, that your eyes have fun, too. Plus, you want to experience one or another melody again, just to take an additional photo theme with you.
That is why there are picture themes coming with Bach's music that initially seem to make no sense. However, you can make it: Leaving combinations, which definitely and really make no sense at all. is what you skip easily.
You meet Johann Sebastian Bach's music best, if you first check, which kind of works you like best: The Brandenburg Concerts are exciting for one person, his cantatas is what another person likes better. Do you love choir music or do you like just instrumental pieces better? Are the passions the right music for you are is a whole different kind of his works? And you can do that really affordable with the following offer: 6 kilograms Bach for just € 199. Plus handling and shipping. Until you have listened to 142 CDs, you have a lot of fun. To be a little more serious: It is the Bach Complete Edition, to date. The exciting thing: At "Bach 4 You" you get the so-called "Alte Bach Gesamtausgabe" which is the "Old Bach Complete Edition" with your purchase. Don't be confused, it's 16,800 music sheets as a pdf and the name is actually the same as the music on CDs is. It's even confusing in German. Plus you get one more exciting gift with the purchase and you can even decide for one among ten.
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You are coming back? Promise? Then please check, what excellent project they made related to Johann Sebastian Bach's colleague Ludwig van Beethoven: It's like magic. This animation is unique and it doesn't exist for any more composer. Not yet. However, that should not remain forever ... not until eternity.
So, either one more Bach fan or a Bach institution will initiate this. Or Renate and I do it. One day. More about this project in the project is what you could read about on "Bach on Bach": On the website or on our Facebook page. You get to our Facebook with a click on the button.
Plus, if you are interested in the "adventure playground Bach 4 You", the shop with its 99 music calendars, Bach gifts, and a St. Valentine's Day calendar and a Mother's Day calendar, you can get there with a click on the second button.
The gift for little musicians": the Bach calendar "Herr Bach macht Musik".
2 music gifts: the Bach biography for children and the matching Bach calendar for the kids' bedroom.
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A Scene from the Bach coloring book, already colored: one of 33 Bach calendars: 3 sizes, European style, 2019 + 2020. To the Shop.
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