Posted by StringOvation Team on Dec 11, 2019
The holidays are centered around tradition, warmth, and the making of memories – what better way to do that than playing your violin for children during the holiday season? We’ve put together a holiday playlist for you, with songs that are guaranteed to delight the children (and nearby adults) as you gather around the fire for screen-free family fun.
Whether you’re a relative beginner yourself, or you’ve been playing the violin for years, the following songs are adaptable for all playing abilities. If you’re currently taking violin lessons, bring the new music to your teacher so they can work on it with you – arranging beginner versions or adding advanced playing embellishments as needed.
Also, visit our 2019 list of the best holiday songs for the violin, for further inspiration.
Songs for The Night Before Christmas
Does your family enjoy the tradition of reading The Night Before Christmas together? This year, why not add an additional dramatic flair by setting the reading to live violin music.
Optional background music for this holiday classic include:
- Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy (Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky)
- The First Noel
- Here Comes Santa Claus
- Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer
- O! Holy Night
Music from the Home Alone Soundtrack
If you’re like most families, the kids’ holiday break and those extra days off work (not to mention winter weather) translate into lots of cozy couch time as you stream favorite movies. Home Alone was an instant success after its 1990 debut. Since then, it has become a contemporary classic, so your kids will love hearing you play some of the songs from the soundtrack.
Classical Greats with Animal Themes
Children love animals, so it makes sense they’re drawn to classical music written around animal themes. In fact, introducing these fun and recognizable classical compositions on your violin fosters children’s lifelong interest in classical music – as well as string instruments.
- Peter and the Wolf (Sergei Prokofiev)
- The Swan (from Carnival of the Animals, by Camille Saint-Saëns
- Theme from Swan Lake (Tchaikovsky)
- Flight of the Bumblebee (Rimsky-Korsakoff)
Music for a Holiday Dance Party
Do your children love to have dance parties - why not give them something to dance to? Visit our post, Violin Pieces That Get People Dancing for some ideas. Favorites from that post include:
- Dancing Queen (ABBA)
- Feelin’ Good (Michael Bublé)
- Just about any music from, 13 Compositions for Fiddlin’ Around
If you have ‘tweens or young adults in the bunch, consider playing Lindsey Stirling songs, almost all of which get people up and moving. If you’re not familiar with Lindsey, you can read about her in our post, Lindsey Stirling: Eclectic Violinist, Performance Artist, Composer.
Honor the Eight Nights and Days of Hanukkah
Does your family honor the Hanukkah tradition? If so, you’ll appreciate virtualsheetmusic.com’s abundant collection of violin music honoring Hanukkah and Jewish holiday tradition.
Some of the songs included there are:
- Oh Hanukkah
- Ma Oz Tsur (Rock of Ages)
- Ner Li (I Have a Candle)
- Ich Bin a Kleyner Dreydl (I Have a Little Dreidel)
- Mi Yimalel (Who Can Retell)
Altogether, there are more than 20 Hanukkah songs in the virtualsheetmusic.com collection.
Play Them Into Sleepy Time
Little ones have trouble sleeping this time of year, often waking up to see if Santa came a day or two early. On Christmas Eve, it’s almost impossible for excited bodies to get to sleep. That’s when some of the soothing classics come in handy.
Send them off to dreamland using:
- L'Arlésienne Suite No.1 (Bizet, Georges)
- Symphony No.9, Op.95 (Dvořák, Antonín)
- Pavane in F# Minor, Op. 50 (Gabriel Fauré)
While your children may not realize it now, your ability to fill their holiday season with live, violin music is one of the most precious gifts you could possibly give them at this - or any other - time of year. Let the memory-making begin!