I’ve always believed that recitals should be fun.

They’re a time for family and friends to gather together to hear some good music and see what the students have been learning, and the kids (and teachers!) work hard to make it happen.

One of the best ways to have a fun recital is to come up with an enjoyable theme.

Here are some of my favorite recital themes.

10. Shall We Dance?

For a ballroom-themed recital, design the programs to look like dance cards and have the students play songs like “Music Box Dancer” and Bach’s Minuet in G.

9. Guess Who?

This one requires some audience participation.

Have each of the students play a piece by a different composer, but don’t announce the composer’s name or print it in the program.

Instead, give everyone a piece of paper with a list of the composers and pieces and have them try to match them up. Collect the papers after the performance is over and give a prize to the audience member(s) who had the most correct answers.

It’s even more fun if you have the students reveal the answers and present the prize.

8. Dinner is Served

If your students always seem to be discussing food during lesson time, this might be the theme for you!

Have the students play food-related songs like “Hot Cross Buns”, “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree”, and “On the Good Ship Lollipop”. Then serve some of those foods at the reception!

7. The Great Lakes State…

…If you happen to live in Michigan like me; otherwise, whatever your state’s nickname is.

Each student plays a song related to the state somehow, whether it’s the state bird, state flower, the college football team’s fight song, or the official state anthem. Use those state symbols to decorate the venue.

6. Christmas in May

Or April, or June, or whatever month in which you are having the recital.

The kids will have fun dressing up in Christmas colors and playing their favorite carols, and you can decorate the venue to look like an out-of-season winter wonderland!

5. Remember When?

For this one, pick a decade and center the recital around it.

For example, a 1940s recital might feature patriotic bunting, Jell-O salad, and some songs by Dean Martin and The Andrews Sisters.

4. Stars and Stripes Forever

Or whatever slogan is appropriate for your country.

From patriotic songs to red, white, and blue programs to apple pie, this Americana theme is full of possibilities.

3. Starry Night

This theme is all about stars and solar system.

Vincent van Gogh’s famous painting would make a nice backdrop, and was there ever a better time to play “When You Wish Upon a Star”, “You Are My Sunshine”, and Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata?

2. Black, White, and Re(a)d All Over

This play on words is a great way to introduce a news-themed recital.

Design the programs to read like a newspaper article, decorate with black, white, and red, and have the students play songs based on historical or current events.

1.Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Social

Style the programs to look like vintage invitations and have the students learn Victorian-era classical pieces and folk songs.

With an ice cream social following the recital, this is one of those recital themes is sure to be a hit with everyone!

What recital themes have you used in the past? Leave a comment below!

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