Stimulating Child Development Through Classical Music
On June 12, 2019, Analekta, the most important classical music label in Canada, is launching Mazaam for tablets and smartphones. Mazaam is an edutainment app attuned to the cognitive and social development of four to six year old children and which features classical music.
“Mazaam awakens and fosters children’s music listening skills, and helps them discover the beauty of masterpieces recorded by musical virtuosos,” said the violinist Angèle Dubeau, spokesperson for the project. “Mazaam contains only authentic recordings— there’s absolutely no synthetic music—, making it a complete and beneficial musical experience, and ideal for introducing children to music. Mazaam is a lifelong gift.”
The Mazaam app provides access to a suite of games, which were designed to hone auditory perception, improve concentration, logical reasoning and abstract thought, and stimulate auditory memory. Through the interactive exploration of five playful worlds, children will become familiar—at their own pace—with pitch, tempo, timbre, intensity and harmony.
A challenge and a solution
“Schools are gradually abandoning children’s musical education, and, as Kent Nagano warns in his recent book, classical music could disappear completely within the next generation,” said Analekta and Mazaam Interactive President and founder François Mario Labbé. “Filling this void is becoming urgent: that’s why Angèle Dubeau and I decided to develop Mazaam, with the goal of creating methods and tools to make it easier to share the benefits of music with children through the rich heritage of classical music.”
With Mazaam, music becomes a learning tool and contributes fully to the multisensory experience (seeing, touching, hearing). The musical works included in the app come from the catalogues of Analekta, Atma Classique and the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (OSM). These works are interpreted by some of the greatest Canadian musicians, including orchestras such as the OSM, the National Arts Centre Orchestra and Les Violons du Roy, as well as renowned Canadian soloists such as violinist Angèle Dubeau, pianist Charles Richard-Hamelin and organist Jean-Willy Kunz.
The Mazaam app is based on the research and the work of the Canada Research Chair in Music and Learning, spearheaded by Jonathan Bolduc. “On the educational level, nothing was left to chance,” Professor Bolduc stated. “The application supports preschoolers’ musical development through age appropriate challenges, including short tasks, fun animations, attractive visuals and activities that require the participation of parents.”
DUO mode: Augmented reality
Recognizing the crucial role of interaction and relationships in cognitive development, Mazaam’s augmented reality module lets parents and kids play together, without requiring parents to have any prior musical knowledge!