The Orchestra of Southern Utah has launched a project known as “Baby Ears,” through which it provides CDs to new mothers through the Valley View Medical Center in Cedar City, Utah. Recordings will also be donated through the program to public libraries in Cedar City and Enoch, Utah. The orchestra says it decided to take on the project as a response to research indicating classical music’s benefits to brain development by babies and young children, as well as research on premature babies showing greater weight gain and lower blood pressure in response to being exposed to classical music. The orchestra’s recording includes performances of the Largo from Dvorák’s “New World” Symphony, the “Jupiter” movement from Holst’s The Planets, and two movements from the Spanish Trail Suite by Marshall McDonald and Steven Sharp Nelson. The orchestra so far has donated 170 CDs to the program; it expects to give approximately 600 CDs per year to new mothers, based on birth rates for Cedar City. 

Posted June 26, 2009