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Like music, the four Seasons of the year can affect our mood, emotions and energy levels. Both elements complement each other – music can provide a welcome uplift during the colder months, and enhance positive moods during the warmer months. They both also help shape strong, happy memories that can carry through from childhood into adulthood. From the first interaction with a lullaby as a baby to the discovery of a favourite new song at school, music can self-soothe and help inspire happy emotions in our little ones.Here, MSO Jams for Juniors presenter Karen Kyriakou looks at how music, and its connection to nature and the seasons, can help promote positive wellbeing within our young ones.

When I was younger, I felt that the summer holidays were simply endless! The children on our street would ride bikes together, we’d visit cousins, swim, and go on beach holidays. Autumn holds the memories of playing in the fallen leaves from the massive oak tree that is still out the front of our family home. There’s nothing quite like playing in piles of crunchy leaves! I used to think winter was my least favourite season, yet I can recall lots of lovely memories snuggled up with my doona on the couch reading books, and other memories of visiting my grandmother with the secret agenda of playing her piano! I seem to recall skipping a lot in Spring. The smell of the warm breeze with bursts of jasmine, and the wattle that would always (and still does) make me sneeze. The daffodils would come out and the blossoms on our plum trees hinted at the fruit to come.

The different seasons are a great way to think about emotions and feelings. Music is a wondrous friend for all sorts of feelings — these not-yet-named and those well-known. Music can instantly transport us in time and place. And when our feelings get a bit too much, sometimes we don’t need even need words. Just a good playlist.

Karen Kyriakou's Songs of the Four Seasons for Kids


1. Here Comes the Sun - George Harrison/The Beatles

2. Folias Criollas from the album ALTRE FOLLIE by Jordi Savll & Hesperion XXI

This piece of music is pure happiness and cheer. It instantly makes me want to get up and move! It’s Peruvian folk baroque perfection that works its way up to quite a sweat!


3. Beethoven: Violin Concerto Mov.1 Allegro ma non troppo

This is one of my favourite violin concertos. When I hear the main theme, I am transported back to my own violin lessons where I had learned this theme from my A Tune A Day book. There’s something very connecting about the music of Beethoven, a master of expressing emotions musically. I feel quite connected to this concerto, likely because it was the first piece (the A Tune a Day version), that I recall playing and absolutely loving.

This movement has playfulness, darkness, drama, simplicity and motion, dappled with sunshine; all the things that autumn can be. Quite an emotional rollercoaster, but one that takes us safely home.

4. Changes by David Bowie

I’ve known this song for nearly my whole life, and it plays a significant part of my musical memories. Autumn is a time of change, and the falling leaves are nicely symbolic of the importance of just letting some things go. I was immediately drawn to Bowie’s music from the moment I first heard it, and this song is a good reminder that not much stays the same, and often change isn’t so bad — and it can be quite liberating.


5. Winter Vivaldi

6. For the Koalas from the Album Hope by Nat Bartsh (side note - featuring MSO players! Which I only just learned!)

Koalas. They’re warm and cuddly, and they lay low in Winter. That feels like what winter should offer us in way of thick doonas, delicious soups and a warm open fire. I can think of nothing more lovely than the thought (as opposed to the reality) of giving a koala a big warm snuggly hug. This piece is really a protest about the loss of habitat for the koalas. It reinforces that we need to be looking out for ourselves, each other, the world we live in and all the creatures that live in it too. A big warm hug for the planet please.


7. Seven Days Walking / Day 1: Golden Butterflies by Ludovico Einaudi, Federico Mecozzi & Redi Hasa

8. Dance of the Paper Umbrellas by Elena Kats-Chernin

This is such a joyous piece of music. It’s gentle and flowing. For me this music IS Spring - it’s literally ‘springy’; fresh, breezy and bursting with of new life.

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