(If you want information about our KID 2 KID MUSIC CRITIC CONTEST click here!)


Here are the winners of the "Old Songs, New Music" Contest. Classes were asked to take a familiar song, create a new variation of the song, then play the song on instruments they built themselves. To hear the songs, listen to the archive of our May 21, 2000 show by clicking here!

6th Grade Winners
"Jailhouse Rock" by Mrs. Christine Zerillos' class at
Wheeler Avenue School, Valley Stream, NY.
Music teacher: Mr. Greg Hart

5th Grade Winners
"Old MacDonald" by Ms. Nancy Nazario's class at
PS 94, Little Neck, Queens
Music teacher: Ms. Reva Schneider

4th Grade Winners
"It's Raining, It's Pouring" by Ms. Evelyn Shapiro's class at Center St. Elementary, Williston Park, NY.
Music teacher: Ms. Martha Weber

6th grade
Wheeler Avenue School, Valley Stream, NY
"The Lion Sleeps Tonight (In the Jungle)"
Ms. Von Werne's class
Music Teacher: Mr. Hart

Anne M. Dorner Middle School, Ossining, NY
"The Mathematician"
Mr. Rivera's class

5th grade
PS 230, Brooklyn
"This Little Light of Mine"
Ms. Sally Dyson’s class
Music Teacher: Mr. Daniel Schorr

Waverly Park Elementary School, East Rockaway, NY
"When the Saints Come Marching in"
Mrs. Fisher’s class
Music Teacher: Ms. Karen Ajamian

4th grade
Washington Elementary School, Lyndhurst New Jersey
"All Star"
Ms. Marilyn Munorovich’s class
Music Teacher: Ms. Jennifer Disanza

Roosevelt Elementary School, Lyndhurst, New Jersey
Ms. Flora Cruz’s class
Music Teacher: Ms. Jennifer Disanza



 Here are the three winners of our most recent Kid-2-Kid Music Critic Contest! Keep reading for tips on writing reviews and then send us one! If you'd like to hear the reviews, click here!

Abilash Jilla, music critic & contest judge Greg Sandow, Andrea Misir, Viginia Kim

"Carnegie Hall Concert" Music Review by Andrea Misir

On June 1, 2000, my class and I went to Carnegie Hall for a concert based on Aaron Copland, Charles Ives, and Peter Tchaikovsky’s songs and ideas. The concert began with “ Fanfare for the Comman Man” a song to welcome the president by Aaron Copland. It first began with the timpani drums and a gong, then a few pieces by the trumpet. Then more timpani and the trumpet with the french horn. It kept going like that with the french horn and the trumpet going higher and lower there was a big finish with the timpani and gong. Then there was variations on “America” by Charles Ives. First there was the original version of “America”, then a quiet variation with polenio, a tapping sound from the violin’s wooden part. Then, way different variations with different instruments and different sounds. After a big finish, there was “Appalachian Spring” by Aaron Copland. It was mostly silent. Then there was the 1812 Overture by Peter Tchaikovsky. It had a rhythm like a wave. It goes high and low and quiet then loud. The whole orchestra was playing and also loud cannon noises with a very big finish. After that, the hall kind of sounded like a clap of loud thunder as everyone clapped. I liked it as I clapped along with the applause because the performance was good.

"Carlos Santana" Music Review by Abilash Jilla

Listen up NY Kids. I think that the new Santana CD Supernatural is off the hook!! I really like how Carlos Santana used different music mixed with his guitar and the cool melodies he throws at us. I really like the song “Maria Maria, She reminds me of a west side story, Growing up in Spanish Harlem, she living a life just like a movies star.” And goes on. This song make u want to jump up and dance. I think Carlos gave it his best in this CD. And he deserved all his Grammy awards he won this year. Out of 1-10 I’m going to give the CD Supernatural a 9. This has been an Abilash Jilla music review.

"The Composer’s World: Songs and Ideas" Music Review by Virginia Kim

On June 2, 2000, the fourth and fifth grade classes of P.S. 49, Queens went to a magnificent concert at Carnegie Hall. It was called “The Composer’s World: Songs and Ideas.” The Orchestra of St. Luke’s, led by conductor, John Morris Russel, played music by Aaron Copland, Charles Ives, and Peter Tchaikovsky. The purpose of the concert was to teach how these composers wrote their music. I think that this performance was an extraordinary way for children to learn about different composers. I especially liked “Variations on America” by Charles Ives because of he way that he changed the mood in each of his variations. For example, some parts sounded very whimsical and I kept hearing them over and over in my head. I also liked the way he used all the instruments in the orchestra. They were all excellent, but I really liked the percussion instruments because they played humorously and their sounds stood out. I enjoyed hearing the flutes because they sounded very graceful. I think the audience enjoyed the performance because they were listening very carefully and at they end of each piece they clapped joyfully. I don’t think there were any parts that I didn’t like about the concert. I think the concert was outstanding because of the strong sound of the orchestra when it played together and the clever way some instruments played from the audience seats during “Fanfare for the Common Man.”

It's an essay you write to tell other kids what you think about music that you've heard. You might write about a particular song, or a whole CD of music. You might write about a live performance you go to. Some reviews are meant to be read, like in newspapers or magazines. Some reviews are meant to be heard, like on the radio. We want you to write a review you can read on NEW YORK KIDS!

All good reviews have these things:

  • Your personal reaction to the music. Did it make you smile or snooze? Was it beautiful or boring? Did you love it or hate it? Or maybe you just don't know how you feel because the music confused you! Whatever you write, say how you feel, and what made you feel that way!
  • Your thoughts on the performers. As far as you can tell, did you think the musicians did a good job? How about the singers? (If you play an instrument or sing, you might be able to compare your experience to how well the performers do.) Is there something specific the performers did that makes you think they were great or not-so-good?
  • Your kid-to-kid rating. Do you think other kids would like the music? Why or why not? Would you recommend that kids listen to it? If it*s a CD, should they spend their allowance on it? If it*s a concert, is it worth the ticket price?

On the next pages you'll find "Tips on Radio Writing" to help you write your music review for NEW YORK KIDS. 

Glad you asked!
"Radio Writing" is writing words for people to hear with their ears, not read with their eyes. Readers can read a sentence over and over. Listeners can't. So radio listeners must understand your words the first time. After that the words are gone forever into space!



The best people on the radio sound like they're TALKING to you, not reading to you. So try to write like you're talking to another kid. Then read your writing out loud. If it sounds like you're reading, then it's wrong. So rewrite it and try it again. Here's an example: read out loud these two sentences. Which one sounds more like people talk?

Yesterday, following the concert, the musicians delivered an address to the student audience.

The musicians talked to the students yesterday after the concert.


Listeners can understand better if you use simple words instead of big ones. When you talk to friends, do you use words like *harmonious*, *orchestral*, or *mesmerizing*? Probably not. So don*t put big words into your radio review. They won*t impress anybody. And kids will understand you better. Simpler is better. On the other hand, simple words can sometimes be boring.

The music was great!

That sentence doesn't really tell you much, does it? But how about this:

The music was so exciting that I felt my heart beat faster!

Still simple words, but now I really know what "great" means!


In radio writing, it's better to write two simple sentences than one long sentence. Why? Because it's hard for listeners to remember at the end of a long sentence what you said at the beginning of the sentence. Remember, they can't go back and hear it again! Below is a sentence that's too long for radio. And then a better way to write the same information, in 3 short sentences.

The musicians, who came onto the stage first, began tuning up their instruments until the conductor arrived, which meant it was time for the concert to begin.

First the musicians came onto the stage. They tuned up their instruments until the conductor arrived. That meant it was time for the concert to begin. 


People use contractions when they talk. You probably say "I've" instead of "I have." "It's" instead of "it is." "We'll" instead of "we will." Remember, radio writing should sound like people talking. So don't be afraid to use contractions when you write your concert review.


Why? Because that's the only way to hear how your words sound. You'll hear if you sound like a kid talking or like a book! And you may hear problems your eyes don't notice, like sentences that are too long, or tongue-twisters like this: Britney Spears slowly sang her silly song of sadness. It's easy to read, but hard to say! Remember, what you LOOK LIKE on the radio is not important. How you SOUND is! If you have a tape recorder, record yourself reading to hear how you sound.


Send your review right away to WNYC by mail, email, or fax. Ask your teacher or parents to help. NEW YORK KIDS producers will call you IF they pick your review to record for the radio. Include your name, address, grade, school, and home phone number. Send your review to:

NEW YORK, NY 10007

EMAIL: mail@nykids.org

FAX: 212 553 0651

Or you can write your own Music Review right here!

Phone #:  

    Write Your Music Review Here!


Then Press Go!

6 TO 8 PM

Home Dirtmeister Game Guy Terry Liz Worldbeat Email
Copyright © WNYC, 1997.