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Once Upon a Quartet

Once Upon a Quartet offers an exciting, fun, and engaging musical story-telling experience for toddlers through elementary school students. With emphasis on interdisciplinary approach to musical learning, members of ConTempus will collaborate with other artists like narrators, painters, and dancers to provide a unique and fun introduction to music by living composers. Hands-on musical activities such as "instrument petting zoo" and "move with music" can also be included upon request. 


Current Programs


"A MOUSE! ... in the HOUSE!" 

Story and Music by Mark Douglass 

This is a fun and charming work specifically written for preschool/elementary-aged children.

The story follows grandma (Rara), whose evening is interrupted by a mouse that follows her around the house. Although she is initially terrified by the mouse, she eventually becomes fond of it after taking the time to study the cute little creature. The accessible music and sweet story will be engaging to children and adults alike.

"We enjoyed the interaction during the story, and of course the hands-on experience at the end."

"The pairing of the music with the story helps the audience picture & value the importance of the sounds."

"The combination of story & music is such a fabulous idea! I love how the story makes the music come alive and encourages the imagination! It was fabulous! So well written & well-played. Love events like this!"

"My 2.5 year old liked the music and pictures, and being able to see how the music is made."

"We loved it!! It made our day. Both older kids want to start violin lessons!"

"Disappearing Landscapes" 

Story and Music by Evan Snyder

This multi-movement children’s work (scored for narrator, flute, clarinet, percussion,

and string bass/cello) explores a few of the most incredible environments found on earth

and contends with some of the issues that these environments face today. 

Deep in the forest, the oldest and wisest of all the birds, known only as Grandmother, tells an assembly of

young birds of her many travels to distant lands. She take the young birds on a storytelling adventure,

first to a coral reef, then the south pole, and finally to the rainforest. She tells them of fantastic creatures

and of all the beautiful life that she encounters, and teaches themto respect it -

for it is only by loving and respecting nature that we can preserve it.

"The story was very original and interesting!"

"A great interactive performance for all ages."

"Loved the storyteller's dedication to the scene in the story and the connections between the music and the story."


"Enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere with related books available for kids to read while listening. Interesting concept!"

"The bowing technique used on the vibraphone was very cool and the big bass was fun to watch!"

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