Parker is 100% an old soul. From his requests for a mint upon entering a vehicle (Altoids are preferred), to his insistence on wearing slippers and cozy pants around the house, to his taste for sushi (he's requested it for his upcoming birthday), our not-quite three-year-old always seems wise beyond his years. His love for classical music, then, should be of no surprise.
It all started with his Daddies book, and this page in particular:
Parker was obsessed with the orchestra and stage. So, we put on some classical music so he could listen to an orchestra play. Parker was instantly hooked. The little guy could not get enough Vivaldi. Specifically, Vivaldi's Four Seasons. It was on repeat all day, every day. From there, he became obsessed with all the instruments. He would literally take two rulers and rub them together to "play the violin" (or cello, or viola, or double bass). He's now expanded beyond Vivaldi, and can also identify works by Beethoven and Mozart (I kid you not).
We played some video clips of symphony orchestras for Parker, and he was mesmerized (partly because we don't have television, so watching any video is a novelty, and partly because of his love for orchestras). After his glimpse of the orchestra at The Nutcracker, Parker kept requesting to see an orchestra in person again. We took a leap of faith and purchased tickets for all three of us for the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra's performance of Mozart's The Abduction from the Seraglio.
We knew the work was an opera, but we weren't sure if the symphony would be accompanied by singers (it was). Also, since it was set in Turkey, I tried to be festive with a fancy head wrap.
Max and Parker were dapper with their bow ties. We reiterated to Parker for weeks ahead of time that we would be wearing fancy clothing (no cozy pants or slippers!), and that the audience at the symphony is very, very quiet. This book from Nana and Papa helped immensely in front-loading him. Parker insists on reading it multiple times a day (even now!).
We've read it so many times that Parker now has it memorized (yes, for realsies), and the battery for the music is now dead. But, he knew exactly what was going to happen at the symphony (and even informed us before the show started that they were going to dim the lights). We snuck up front when we arrived to get a close-up view of the musicians. Parker informed us that there were three double basses.
The first part of the performance was a little over an hour, and our sweet man sat in the audience like a boss. Still, we decided that intermission would be a good time to head back home (it was nearing nine o'clock which is way past bedtime, and we figured we'd quit while we were ahead). In our talks about "Intermission" we had explained that it's when the musicians rest, and when the audience can stretch their legs and get a snack... like a soft pretzel. So who was obsessed with soft pretzels? Our little guy! We were happy to indulge.
Parker caught a glimpse of the choir singers (who accompanied the opera singers at certain points) in their break room. And who makes friends with everyone? Why, Sweet P of course. He was invited in by the director, and even got one-on-one time with the choir conductor who commended us for exposing Parker to the symphony (he explained that it's an acquired taste).