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New Concert for Kids 3-6: “Baby Got Bach: Principally Percussion” March 20, 2016

February 19, 2016

For the first time, Princeton University Concerts (PUC) is offering a special program for children ages 3-6 and their families! On Sunday, March 20, 2016 at 1PM in Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall, world-renowned pianist Orli Shaham will host Baby Got Bach: “Principally Percussion,” featuring Princeton’s esteemed Ensemble-in-Residence So Percussion and American Ballet Theatre dancer Rachel Richardson. This interactive concert will explore all of the sounds a piano and percussion can make through the music of J.S. Bach, Steve Reich, John Cage, and Steven Mackey. The audience is invited to stay afterward to come on stage and jam with the musicians!

Given the enormous popularity of the Meet the Music concerts on the series for older kids, PUC has wanted to create a similar musical opportunity for even younger listeners. The program offered by “Baby Got Bach” allows youngsters to be introduced to music in a highly interactive way. Handed a handkerchief when entering the hall, they will get to use this souvenir in various ways while listening to Sneaky March by Princeton’s own Steven Mackey; the audience will learn how to perform Steve Reich’s Clapping Music and watch how household objects can become instruments in John Cage’s Living Room Music; J.S. Bach’s beloved Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 becomes “Baby Got Burg,” and his popular 2-part Invention #1 in C Major might be recognized by piano beginners or their siblings. But the magic of music will also unfold spontaneously before the audience when So Percussion and Rachel Richardson improvise Rachel’s Dream, a dance number that is sure to inspire as much as it enchants. We hope that this concert will awaken the musician in every listener, and will offer maracas to kids who would like to come onstage and jam with the musicians at the end of the program.

The interactive concert series Baby Got Bach was founded by concert pianist Orli Shaham in 2010. As Artistic Director, she draws on both her background as an internationally renowned musician and her experience as the mother of young children. Baby Got Bach's interactive concerts introduce young children to musical instruments, concepts, and the experience of concert-going. The concerts feature hands-on activities followed by performances that encourage audience participation and develop listening skills. The wildly popular series, based at the 92Y, is included in New York Magazine's "Best of New York" list, and has been cited as "magical" and "a terrific family event" in the press, praised in the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, New York Magazine, among others.

Host and pianist Orli Shaham, winner of the Gilmore Young Artist Award and the Avery Fisher Career Grant, has established an impressive international reputation as one of today's most gifted pianists. Hailed by critics on four continents, she has performed with nearly all of the major symphony orchestras in North America, as well as some of the most important orchestras in Europe, Asia and Australia including the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre National de France, Sydney Symphony Orchestra and many more. Her recital schedule takes her to well-known venues around the world, from Carnegie Hall in New York to Amsterdam's Concertgebouw. Driven by a passion to bring classical music to new audiences, Ms. Shaham has maintained an active parallel career as a respected broadcaster, music writer and lecturer. Ms. Shaham has taught music literature at Columbia University, and was artist in residence on National Public Radio’s Performance Today.

Sō Percussion, the Edward T. Cone Ensemble-in-Residence at Princeton University, has redefined the modern percussion ensemble as a flexible, omnivorous entity, pushing its voice to the forefront of American musical culture. Sō's adventurous spirit is written into the DNA passed down from composers like John Cage and Steve Reich, as well as from pioneering ensembles like the Kronos Quartet and Nexus Percussion. Sō Percussion's career now encompasses 19 albums, touring throughout the US and around the world, a dizzying array of collaborative projects, several ambitious educational programs, and a steady output of its own music.

Dancer Rachel Richardson joined American Ballet Theatre as an apprentice in January 2015 and quickly was promoted to a member of the corps de ballet a few months later. She began her training with John Grensback at the Oregon Ballet Academy and continued her training at the Eugene Ballet Academy under the direction of Toni Pimble. She competed in the Youth America Grand Prix, winning the silver medal at the New York City finals in 2013 at only 16 years old. Richardson has received scholarships to multiple summer intensives including Pacific Northwest Ballet, Bolshoi Ballet, Houston Ballet, Royal Ballet School and San Francisco Ballet. She has performed classical variations from Raymonda, The Nutcracker, Grand pas Clasique, Giselle, Paquita, Esmeralda, and Swan Lake, as well as works by Susan Jaffe, Antony Tudor, and Bruce Steivel.


WHEN:  Sunday, March 20, 2016 at 1PM
WHAT: Baby Got Bach:  “Principally Percussion,” a concert for kids (suggested ages 3-6) and their families.  Hosted by pianist Orli Shaham featuring Sō Percussion and American Ballet Theatre’s Rachel Richardson
WHERE: Princeton University Concerts, Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall, Princeton University
TICKETS: $10 General; $5 Students. Tickets are available online at, by phone at 609-258-9220, or in person two hours prior to the concert at the Richardson Auditorium Box Office.
PHOTOS: Please contact Dasha Koltunyuk at or 609-258-6024

For further information please contact Dasha Koltunyuk at or 609-258-6024

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Dasha (Darya) Koltunyuk
Phone:  609-258-6024