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Music for the End of Time

by Jen Bryant
Illustrated by Beth Peck

Published by Eerdmans, 2005
32 pages
ISBN: 0802852297

Ages 6-9

During World War II, composer Olivier Messiaen was a soldier in the French army when he was captured by the Germans and held as a prisoner of war. When he learned of Olivierís occupation, the young German officer in charge of the camp gave him permission to work on his music, eventually providing him with a broken-down piano. Three other prisoners were also musicians, and when Olivier completed the composition on which he had been working the four of them performed it for 5,000 fellow prisoners on January 15, 1941. Jen Bryantís eloquent picture book account of the events surrounding the composition and debut performance of Messiaenís Quartet for the End of Time is set against Wisconsin artist Beth Peckís lyrical charcoal and pastel illustrations that beautifully balance somber tones of prison life with soaring scenes in which the music is symbolized by sweeping swaths of warm yellow and the freedom of birds in flight. CCBC Category: Historical People, Places, and Events.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center


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