Peter and the Wolf in HollywoodNovember 12, 2015
Alexander Shelley and the German National Youth Orchestra
Children’s classic told in new way
Rock superstar Alice Cooper narrates
Critically-acclaimed New York-based production company Giants Are Small and the world’s foremost classical record label Deutsche Grammophon proudly present Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood, an unforgettable journey of classical music, visual wonder, and digital play, giving an invigorating new perspective on Prokofiev’s classic. Audiences of all ages will be able to experience the beloved story of the resourceful Russian boy in multiple complementary formats: digital album, CD, and the richly immersive, interactive experience of an iPad app designed especially for children (age 5-8).
Prokofiev’s tale is set in modern-day Los Angeles and anchored with a thrilling prequel – set off by the wolf’s escape from the local zoo – that takes Peter on a journey of robot building, a helicopter chase, and some melancholic introspection, all before he enters the forbidden meadow where he finally captures the wolf.
Giants Are Small’s trademark style combining magical visuals, touching characters, and tone-perfect comic timing opens a fresh view of Peter’s adventure — and a fresh hearing of Prokofiev’s classic score, which is performed in full, preceded by a wide selection of works by classical music legends such as Wagner, Schumann, Mahler, and Satie.
Alice Cooper says that narrating Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood took him back to his childhood. “I first heard this back in Detroit, when I was six or seven years old. My mom put the record on and I was instantly transported to another world,” he recalls. “And it has been huge fun for me to do something new after nearly 50 years in the business.” He’s also delighted with the story’s modern-day twist. “I love the fact that it’s moved on, and that Peter has come to Los Angeles to meet his grandfather, who turns out to be an old hippie! That gives the story a fresh dynamic. And I like that he’s not in the least bit terrified by the wolf, when everybody else is freaking out.”
The album was recorded by Deutsche Grammophon with one of the world’s leading youth orchestras, the National Youth Orchestra of Germany, directed by acclaimed conductor Alexander Shelley.
Frank Briegmann, President Central Europe Universal Music and Deutsche Grammophon, calls Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood “a brilliant update of a timeless classic, which is bound to charm and entertain young and old alike”.
The Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood app is aimed at deepening children’s engagement with both the music and the story. For each character in the story, the app offers a game that emphasizes the personality conveyed by the musical theme. At each key turning point in the story, the child can help Peter in his daring quest to rescue the wolf that has escaped from the zoo.
The result is an album and app with a humorous and fresh take on a much-loved classic, exploring themes of family and friendship, courage and heroism, and set against the backdrop of today’s media-saturated celebrity world.
A bonus section, featuring short videos, explores the making of the project, including how the music was recorded, and the fascinating creative process behind the visuals of the app.