Craig Newton entertains at the Blanchard Community Library. Photo by Susan Branham

Santa Paula children took a musical journey around the world

August 08, 2007
Santa Paula News
By Susan Branham Santa Paula TimesSanta Paula children took a musical journey around the world in search of clues this July. Their instrumental detective work, “Musical Mystery” with Craig Newton, took place at Blanchard Community Library. The program was in harmony with the Library’s Summer Reading Program, themed “Get a Clue at Your Library.”“We’re always so delighted to have Craig Newton at our library,” Ilene Gavenman, Children’s and Young Adult Librarian, said. “His enthusiasm for music, and the variety of instruments that he performs are appreciated by children and parents alike. We always enjoy his program. The parents always comment about how good the program was. He gets everybody singing and dancing. He’s very instructive about the instruments and their history.”Newton played an impressive array of instruments and his selections ranged from Mozart to “The ABC Song.” The music spanned the years; a history with “Old Dan Tucker” on the banjo, “Itsy Bitsy Spider” on the Ukulele and “Surfin’ USA” on the electric guitar. An African drum accompanied “The Lions Sleep Tonight,” and a violin with a bow strung with hairs from a horse’s tail sang to the children like a happy bird.The children learned about the instruments from clues, heard the stories of the instruments, and then got to sing and dance along as they were played. Intriguing clues were read from a parchment. “This instrument has lots of curves, and when it’s played loud, it gets on your nerves,” one clue hinted. The answer was the trombone, of course, and a rousing marching tune followed. Letter clues were derived from songs, and the letters, when unscrambled produced the melodious words, “The Library.”
Craig Newton’s “Historical Journeys through Music” are enjoyed at assemblies, Back-to-School Nights, workshops and concerts. He performs extensively at schools and libraries. “Santa Paula is such a unique community,” Craig Newton said. “I love doing this.”The “Musical Mystery” program was presented by Blanchard Community Library and Friends of the Library. The 2007 Summer Reading Program “Get a Clue at Your Library,” for children and teens, complete with fun prizes, runs through Saturday, August 25.

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