The Man With the Violin

8 min. Dist. by Dreamscape Media. 2014. $38.99. ISBN 9781629239590.
RedReviewStarPreS-Gr 4 - Young Dylan is trotting down the street with his mom on their daily trek to the subway on their way home. As the twosome enter the station, he hears the most tantalizing violin music. He begs his mom to stop and listen to the violinist who is transforming the subway station into a concert arena. Dylan's homeward-bound mom keeps to her routine, gliding down the escalator with Dylan in tow, heading to the screeching subway and the blippity blabbety of subway passengers. Dylan wanders in his apartment unable to forget the violin music that wove its way into his head, and suddenly, the radio begins playing the mesmerizing tune he heard in the subway station. It's his violin music, and Dylan finally gets his mom's attention. She turns up the radio, and they dance. In 2007, Joshua Bell, a child prodigy and concert violinist, actually played as a street musician in the Metro Station in Washington, DC, for passengers as an experiment. This simple story is loaded with rich language and onomatopoeia, combined with visual delight through the clever use of color and lines. Narrator George Newbern's pacing and emphasis on the richness of text is a perfect match. This story can be watched again and again to recover a child's awareness in the delight of the nonroutine. Valuable background information about Joshua Bell is provided, as well as a read-along option.—Nancy Baumann, Literacy Consultant, Columbia, MO

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