In this Episode I talked about my experience with David Walliams’ Marvellous Musical Podcast. This educational podcast wrapped up the first season with 10 episodes at the time of recording and it’s unclear whether they intend to produce more.
PodApplaud-David Walliam’s Marvellous Musical Podcast
Welcome to PodApplaud, the Monday through Friday podcast that aims to enable your Podcast habit. I’m your host Seb, and today we are going to talk about David Walliam’s Marvellous Musical Podcast.
David Walliam’s Marvellous Musical Podcast is an educational kid-centric look into classical music put on by Classic FM. Episodes are usually between 15 and 20 minutes long, currently the show has finished it’s 10 planned episodes, it is unknown if it will continue in the future. The show is geared towards kids so the language is A-Okay for the little ones.
The show’s description is as follows, “Join David Walliams as he goes on a marvellous musical journey of discovery and meets some of the most famous name from the history of music – from Ludwig ‘Grumpy’ Beethoven to 19th-century rock star Franz Liszt. (Please not no composers were harmed in the making of this podcast).
The show’s cover art is reminiscent of Terry Gilliam’s artwork, AKA the fella who did that erratic art in many Monty Python productions, including the Holy Grail and The Flying Circus. This podcast in turn kind of takes that idea and runs with the energy. The parallels are especially easy to draw since this is a british production after all. There is a lot of absurdism, 4-th wall breaking, cheeky asides, jokes, and goofs stuffed into this podcast that is geared towards teaching kids about classical music. I’d say the show spends equally as much, maybe even slightly more time joking about than actually teaching you about composers and concertos.
Most episodes are focused upon a single composer, who is fully voiced usually complete with a real silly accent. We learn a bit about their personality, which is usually blown up quite a bit by the show to make the characters more surreal and easier to imagine for kids. We are also treated to short bits of their compositions. In addition there are episodes focused on the history of the piano, Ballet, and Weird finger qoutes ‘instruments’ that have been used in orchestras, such as repurposed veggies, anvils, and the glass harmonica.
When it comes to audio quality and soundscape, the show really shines. I can almost picture all of the little skits and wacky happenings in my mind like a TV show. In-fact part of me thinks like this whole idea might have just made a better TV show than Podcast. I’m not sure how many kids exactly listen to podcasts, but in my time on the internet I have seen a few parents asking for recommendations for their kids, usually listing some shows the kids are already into. Quite often I’m surprised by just how adult and information dense these shows kids are apparently listening to really are. The first couple episodes of David Walliam’s Marvellous-mhm. The first couple episodes of D.W.M.M.P. are a little too Fortnite and Fidget Spinners for my liking. If you’re unsure what I mean, the script is pandering too much in the first couple episodes, but reigns it in allowing the absurdism and quick bouncing between jokes and facts take control in later episodes. The later episodes might still be somehwhat underestimating the youth, who seem to be able to hold their interest on podcasts decently well. Or maybe this podcast is aiming for a younger demographic than I expect. If that is the case though, there are quite a few jokes that rely on being somewhat familiar with David Walliam. I think the answer ultimately is that the show is meant to be listened to as a family.
Ok so here on PodApplaud I rate shows on a 1-5 scale, 1 is silence, 2 is a slow clap, 3 is applause, 4 is a round of applause, and 5 of course is a standing ovation! I give David Walliam’s Marvellous Musical Podcast a 3/5, applause!
The show is wacky and fun it got a few chuckles out of me, and it does serve as a primary primer for classical music. I really would enjoy seeing this animated, which would help stick faces to the names of the composers and help ground the spirited nature of the show. For now I would recommend this podcast to families to listen to together, perfect for commuting in the car.
So that’s been the show for today I hope you found it valuable If you wish to reach out to me you can find me on twitter @podapplaud or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you for listening, and please tune in again.