MUSICAL LEGENDS, LLC
Interactive Educational Programs for children (Pre-K – 8th Grade)
Founder and Artistic Director: Lauren Hooker (See BIO below for more info).
MUSICAL LEGENDS brings to life stories and musical genres from around the world by integrating all of the arts and inviting the entire audience to participate.
For over fifteen years MUSICAL LEGENDS has performed in countless schools, theaters, camps, libraries, museums and festivals to rave reviews. See BIO (below) for more info.
Teaching cultures through the arts and arts through the cultures
Storytelling * Music * Movement * Dance * Craft Workshops
See description of each show and prices below:
All Shows are 45 min - Discounts available for shows back to back
Call 201-801-0527 to schedule a show
(Pre-K through 5th Grade) (up to 175 kids) $350 per show – for a solo act / Duo Act (over 175 kids) $650. Plus accompanying related craft workshop directly after show: $150 for 50 kids
RAINBOW CROW is an interactive, educational and theatrical performance that delights audiences of all ages in a spellbinding style that both entertains and instructs. Based on a children's story book retold by Nancy Van Laan, it is a poignant tale of how fire was brought down to Mother Earth in a self-less act that affects permanent and positive change. Assuming the role of the teller of tales, Lauren encourages the audience to become the animals of the story through Native American sign language, singing Native American songs, and dancing a toe-heel dance step - getting everyone into the action. An enchanting combination of song, dance, storytelling, and the haunting sounds of Native American flute music, drums and rattles, RAINBOW CROW explores our relationship to Mother Earth.
WONDERFUL!! The entire audience was completely involved and absorbed in the story. Comments such as Great! Terrific! were expressed again and again.
- Lee Memorial Library, Allendale, NJ
THE FIRE CHILDREN
(Pre-K through 5th Grade) (up to 175 kids) $350 per show – for a solo act. Plus accompanying related craft workshop directly after show: $150 for 50 kids
MUSICAL LEGENDS brings to life this lively, musical rendition of an African Creation Myth from Ghana celebrating the earth and its’ people of many different shades and colors. As this joyful tale unfolds with Djembe Drum and Thumb Piano, the entire audience joins in with the storyteller through movement games, songs and African dance motions. Life sized Akuaba dolls and tribal Moon Mask help create a stimulating visual backdrop for this masterful storyteller. Informative, fun and educational, The Fire Children is the perfect way for students to rejoice in diverse cultures - what makes us different – yet the same – a great social studies enrichment program!
I don't recall ever seeing a children's performer who performed with such enthusiasm. Ms. Hooker really knows how to grab an audiences attention, not only because she is so talented and versatile, but because she has a great camraderie with children and because her enthusiasm spreads to the audience. Programs like these are very good for the Newark Library, because as Newark is becoming more diverse, children can learn about their culture, while others can learn about a culture that is not theirs.
– Paul Volpe, Children's Librarian, Newark Public Library
THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR
- The classic tale by Eric Carle
(Pre-K - 2nd Grade) (up to 175 kids) $350 per show – for a solo act
Kids follow the caterpillar's path as he eats his way through one apple on Monday, two pears on Tuesday, three plums on Wednesday, and so on, through cherry pie and chocolate cake - until he gets really fat and has a stomachache - I bet you can guess what happens next! This wonderful story is brought to life with songs, movement, percussion instruments, puppets and even a giant moon mask. While the story unfolds, children join in with the storyteller, singing the songs and counting the food in both English and Spanish, and even becoming a butterfly themselves!
Lauren Hooker's rendition of The Very Hungry Caterpillar was an absolute treat. She not only had the full, captivated attention of our pre-schoolers, but of the teachers as well! Her performance was memorable for everyone, and we cannot wait to have her back in the Fall.
- Kristina Wells, The Caedmon School, NYC
THE GREAT KAPOK TREE
A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest By Lynne Cherry
(Pre-K - 2nd Grade) (up to 175 kids) $350 per show – for a solo act
This wonderful story of how a tree is saved by the animals of the rainforest is brought to life through original songs, percussion instruments, masks, puppets and a giant Kapok Tree. While the story unfolds, children join in with the storyteller, acting out the story by singing the songs, making percussive sounds with their bodies and becoming the animals of the rainforest through movement and yoga positions.
JAZZ 4 KIDS
(Pre-K through 5th Grade) For a Quartet $800/Trio $700/Duo $600
Explore the jazz legends of the world with Musical Legends interactive, educational program: “Jazz 4 Kids”. Together, with world renowned jazz musicians and vocalist/educator Lauren Hooker, the ensemble leads the audience through the origins of jazz, beginning the journey with participatory African “Call and Response” "Field Holler" and "Slave Songs" and translating it into singing a “Twelve Bar Blues”, a “Swing” tune, and a special “Cool Jazz” composition accompanied by an original poem entitled “Paint the Music”. Children are exposed to jazz legends Cab Calloway, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald and Miles Davis while participating in “Jazz Etiquette” and “Trading Fours”. The audience becomes the instruments in a “Jazz Trio” and experiences the freedom of improvisational scat singing. It’s fun! It’s educational! It’s exciting! A wonderful program that explores one of America’s truest art forms.
"What a sensational program! Lauren had the children jitterbugging and scat singing! We will definitely want to have Jazz 4 Kids back!"
- Lois Brody, Director, Children Services, Ridgewood Public Library, NJ
CELEBRATION OF THE DRUM
Programs are tailored for Pre-K – Kindergarten, Grades 1-5, 6-9, as well as senior citizen groups (Age 2-92!) Duo $600
Musical Legends and UniBeat Drum Circles have teamed up for an exciting and interactive program for all ages. Utilizing a variety of hand drums and percussion instruments from various cultures, participants will join together with the artists learning various rhythms, movement, dance and songs from around the world. An African Call and Response with djembe drums and movement, A Native American flute song with hand drums and bells, a bi-lingual Spanish song with conga drums, claves and maracas, as well as a Brazilian Carnival song ending with a participatory conga line. It’s fun! It’s exciting! It’s educational and uplifting!
SING AMERICA’S STORY
(Pre-K through 8th Grade) Quintet $1,000
Hold on tight and take an amazing trip of how history is reflected in the music of the African American experience. Students start an interactive journey with an African groove call and response invitation. As they enter the room, the sounds of drums and percussion instruments fill the air. The journey continues with power point show assisting as we move on gracefully to the era of blues and jazz. Icons like Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington are engraved in our hearts once again. Why did they play like that and what was going on in America to create this heartfelt music that still lives on today? Can’t stop now!!!! We visit the Motown era where the music created was not just for entertainment - it was the sweet voice of freedom with a new identity for the young African American whose voices had been silenced for so long. As we near the end of our journey the party is just beginning. We reflect on how today’s artists like Alicia Keys, Will I Am and others are influenced by the past and together we learn how they share the responsibility to create a soundtrack for tomorrows children.
I appreciated the interactive quality of the performance... you all did an excellent job of including all the children at their age level. I liked the way you incorporated the history of the music you were presenting… wonderful that your group demonstrated diversity, so the children could see cooperation in action.
– Linda Cifelli, Teaneck Public School Psychologist
PAINT THE MUSIC
(1st Grade through 8th Grade) For a Quartet $800/Trio $700/ Duo $600
Interactive and Educational Exploratory Expressions of Visual Art, the Spoken Word and Improvisational Music. In this unique multi-media program the audience creates original artwork while exploring line, shape and color found in live improvisational music, the spoken word, original artwork and slides from the Metropolitan Museum of Art Collection. The musicians conclude the session by improvising and interpreting one or two selected works.
Paint the Music was a wonderful show - what an experience! This program was very interactive - a great opportunity for the children to express themselves in many ways. The children were excited to be a part of an environment that encouraged imagination and thought.
– Lissa Romaine, Director, Giggles Children's Theater, Medical Missions for Children @ St Joseph's Children's Hospital, Paterson, NJ
LAUREN HOOKER'S TEACHING BIO
LAUREN HOOKER, is a multifaceted performer, educator and producer. Throughout her vast career, she has enchanted audiences as a jazz vocalist (with two CDs to her credit), an instrumentalist, storyteller, composer, lyricist, conductor of children’s choruses, and an acclaimed music and events producer.
Lauren’s interest in world music and multi cultural curriculum began at Bank Street School for Children in Manhattan in the late 80’s/early 90’s where she taught music to children grades one through four. This led to the development of “Musical Legends”, an interactive educational program for children that brings to life legends and musical genres from around the world by integrating all of the arts and inviting the entire audience to participate. Both as a solo artist and with some of the best musicians in the tri-state area, Ms. Hooker has performed, since 1993, in countless schools, theaters, libraries, museums and festivals to rave reviews. Through music, dance, storytelling and craft workshops children learn the songs, dances, stories and languages with the Native American Lenape tale: “The Legend of Rainbow Crow”, a Creation Myth from Ghana, West Africa: “The Fire Children”, a “Jazz 4 Kids” show about the Jazz Legends of the World, a collaborative piece entitled “Paint the Music” with a teaching artist from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, as well as her new shows: “Sing America’s Story”, an interactive journey from the Blues to R&B, “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle and “The Great Kapok Tree” by Lynne Cherry. She is currently working on a television/internet series for children entitled “You Can Do It Too with Ms. Lauren” – empowering children and adults to participate in the arts.
Lauren Hooker received her Music Education Degree (K-12) with a concentration in theater from Fairleigh Dickinson University and her certification as an Orff Schulwerk instructor from Bloomingdale House of Music in NYC. She continued post-graduate work in conducting at Manhattan School of Music, Jazz Theory with Kenny Barron at Rutgers University, Jazz Voice with Sheila Jordan at the Manhattan School of Music, as well as course work at Bank Street College of Education, HB Studios for the Performing Arts, and the NY School for Commercial Music.
In addition to teaching music at Bank Street, she has also taught at The Red Oaks School in Morristown, NJ (formerly Montessori’s Children’s House - grades pre-k through 6th grade), The Neighborhood School in NYC (grades one through four), the Hamilton Park Montessori School in Jersey City (pre-K - 1st Grade), as well as teaching piano privately in her home studio in Teaneck, NJ.
One of the co-founders of the former, award winning Teaneck Cultural Arts Coalition, Inc., a non-profit organization made up of visual and performing artists: "bringing people together by celebrating cultural diversity through the arts", Lauren produced annual festivals, art shows, concert series and “First Night Teaneck” celebrations of the arts on New Years Eve. Lauren also served as Artistic Director to “Teaneck Festival of Arts’’, a project of the Puffin Foundation, Ltd.; and served as Production Manager for the “Teaneck Community Chorus”.
MUSICAL LEGENDS, LLC