Design of the 2021 study

The impact of story telling in a concert on children

The first research project of the Classical Expression research group is on the impact of storytelling in concerts.

There will be two research approaches:

- quantitative approach (setting A, regular school children agegroup, 6-10 years)

- qualitative approach (setting B, children with learning disorders, agegroup 6-12 years).

In the qualitative experiment participation techniques are added, specifically designed for children with learning disorders.

In all experiments a “story telling performance” group will be compared to a “non story telling performance” control group. The experiments of setting A will be repeated in two schools in two neighbourhouds with diverse socio economic background, and experiments of setting B in one two ZMLK schools (Zeer moeilijk lerende kinderen).

The set up of the experiments will be similar to the way the Classic Express concerts are organized normally. The CE truck will be at a schoolyard for a week, allowing many concerts to take place. A performance in which musical pieces are connected by an ongoing story is created. The story is told by an experienced presenter of Classic Express concerts, Elsbet Remijn. The performing musicians are violinist Martine Velthuis and guitar player Michael van Dijk.

Setting A, quantitative approach

In order to know if a story is helping to increase the impact of music, we need to measure the “impact”. Quantification in these matters is disputable. We are however not trying to measure the impact of music on individuals, but conduct, a so-called epidemiological study. The average impact of a performance technique in

the age-cohort 6-10.

4 research questions setting A

1. Does storytelling influence the attention span of children in a concert?

2. Does storytelling affect the perceived emotional intensity of children in a concert?

3. What is the effect of story telling in a concert on the motivation to listen to classical music again

4. What is the effect of storytelling in a concert on the motivation to learn to play a classical instrument?

Setting B, qualitative approach

1. How does storytelling and added other participation elements influence the behaviour and involvement in a concert for children with special needs?