About a year into everything I started to perform. I remember my two first shows, I stood almost solid in front of a stand up microphone. The only thing moving was my right foot (and my shaking knees).  Seen here with the foot tap circa 2000:
Luckily this show was video taped too. After wanting to crawl under the bed and hide for awhile - I realized that I needed to incorporate some actions into my songs. I naturally moved in class, and more importantly - children naturally wanted to move - so I changed my slogan from Musical FUN for Everyone to 'Music That Makes You MOVE' 

This was before Music and Movement programs existed, and long before television started to have the push towards getting children off the couch and exercising. (I started Music and Movement concerts and classes in 2000 - I remember the push being in 2005 - as at that point I was being contacted by producers - that's for another blog) cheeky

Everything I have done with children is solely out of observing them, listening to parents, and then looking within in myself and what I feel comfortable with. I feel my classes, concerts and music are really organic and come from my heart. heart

I definitely KNOW that there are tons of other awesome Children's Musicians and Entertainers out there (I know and love many of them) and now there are MANY programs out there for parents to attend - which is GREAT! 

I am definitely not an old timer in the biz (please don't ever call me that indecision) but I am grateful that I was on the cutting edge of it all, and that I followed my heart and intuition and created programs that were Musical FUN for Everyone. Classes and concerts that got new moms and dads out, that got babies moving and giggling and toddlers and preschoolers moshing and jumping.

As far as concerts go. In 2005 Music with Marnie was the first group to perform for the 'younger audience' at the Vancouver International Children's Festival. Lindy Sisson was the director. The Music with Marnie Band and I had played the free stage two years prior, and Lindy noticed that the majority of my crowd averaged about 6 months - 4 years. In it's 20 or so years prior, the Festival focused mostly on Kindergarten to Grade 7. Lindy got a brand new stage called the 'Peanut Stage' and we had 6 Sold Out Shows filled with mini moshers. See Video of the Concert HERE - Since then, the Vancouver International Children's Festival has expanded it's audience from 6 months - 12 Years, and has invited many fabulous entertainers to enthrall crowds young and old. 

I still have lots of puppets from my days as an Early Childhood Educator and have still been singing many of the same songs for over 20 years ... but I also introduce something new every semester, be it a new prop, instrument, activity or song. Whatever I do, works because everything I do has my love for children and music in mind.

Thanks for growing up and singing with me!

WIth Love,
Marnie (middle aged timer) ... wink