Recorded at London’s famed Abbey Road Studios, the Kanneh-Mason Family performs Camille Saint-Saëns‘ Aquarium, the seventh movement from Le Carnaval des animaux (The Carnival of the Animals). The piece is on the family’s debut album Carnival.
Cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason is known for his performance during the 2018 royal wedding in England, as well as winning 2016 BBC Young Musician of the Year award.
From the Kanneh-Masons—Isata, Braimah, Sheku, Konya, Jeneba, Aminata, and Mariatu—via their Decca booklet:
“The idea for this album grew from our special connection with music as young children. Music that speaks to the young, brought to life in the creative dialogue between narrative and sound, has an impact that lasts a lifetime. As very young children, our parents introduced us to Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, and we listened to this obsessively every morning before Primary school…
We were all similarly fascinated by the magical world of story and music created in Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Saëns. The drama, the picture-painting and the humour which is packed into the music has been brought into vivid colour by Michael Morpurgo’s story poems, – also narrated by the extraordinary Olivia Colman – which are funny, exciting and at times incredibly moving.”
“This was an album of collaboration. As a family, we kept finding new ways of playing and discovering its richness. But together with Michael Morpurgo’s fascinating insights and the wonderful musicians who joined us on this album, Toby Hughes, Alasdair Malloy, Timothy Ridout, Ayla Sahin, Mark Simpson, Adrian Spillett, and Adam Walker, we embarked on a real adventure in sound and story. Cuckoo, birds, fish, an elephant, donkeys, tortoises, fossils – all the animals from kangaroos to roosters came to strident and beautiful life in this very special retelling of a favourite musical tale.”
Listen to Carnival on Spotify. Then watch these related videos next:
•Cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason plays Le cygne (The Swan)
• Vittorio Monti’s Csárdás performed by The Kanneh-Masons
• Le Carnaval des Animaux by Camille Saint-Saëns
• Pierre et le loup, a stunning, typography-filled animation
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