Catherine Greer, BA Hons, MA, is an author of fiction and non-fiction, a copywriter and an age positive advocate at the lifestyle blog LoveOurAge.com. Catherine’s books include The 10 Minute Fix (2020), Love Lie Repeat (2019), and the award-winning Choosing Happiness (2006, collaboration with Dr. S Dowrick). Catherine lives with her husband and two young adult sons in Sydney. Violin and Cello is her second collaboration with musician and co-author, Alexander Lau. The two first worked together on Catherine’s growth mindset picture book, Jacaranda Snow (2018).
Alexander Lau is an emerging contemporary classical composer. Having played violin for 15 years, Alex often writes chamber music for strings. He is also a member of the Seraphim String Trio, established in 2015. Alex’s compositional style is diverse and often changes. Most recently, his works have been influenced by Jazz and American minimalism. Alex is also the composer of ‘Jacaranda Snow’, a piano quartet for the growth mindset picture book, Jacaranda Snow. Alex lives with his family in Sydney and currently studies at The University of NSW. Resonate Magazine interviewed Alex to chat about Violin and Cello and his process Click here to read
Joanna Bartel is a designer and illustrator. Previously, she has been a graphic designer for a boutique fashion label, a senior art and design teacher and an English teacher in Melbourne and Brisbane, and a copywriter and graphic designer in marketing. Now she brings her experience in Arts education, design, teaching and creative marketing to her illustration work! Joanna particularly loves character design and creating imaginative and playful images to engage children and enhance imaginative learning.
A perfect gift for any young musician! Violin & Cello celebrates musical friends — with a bonus duet of ‘The Mystery Friends’ for young violinists and cellists to play now!
Children will love this heart-warming story about making music with friends. Violin & Cello follows two young musicians as they discover the secret to who is practising in the apartment next door! This picture book is perfect for young readers beginning to learn an instrument, particularly violin or cello, and for every parent or teacher helping them along the way.
Catherine Greer’s delightful story of musical friends and Joanna Bartel’s intricate, detailed illustrations explore the lives of two young musicians — a violinist and a cellist — who live with their families in a large city.
Award-winning Australian composer, Alexander Lau, has composed an original duet for violin and cello, ‘The Mystery Friends’. The score for the allegro and adagio movements of ‘The Mystery Friends’ are printed in the book. This beautiful composition is simple enough to be played by young cellists and violinists.
Readers of every age are sure to shout ‘Encore!’ when they experience this joyful celebration of friendship and classical music.
South Sydney Herald – reviewed by Marjorie Lewis-Jones
“For such a seemingly simple book, Violin & Cello covers a lot of territory, exploring cultural diversity, life in large cities, musical terms and musical education and friendship. For me, the cherry on the top is that Lau’s composition is simple enough to be played by young cellists and violinists”
Reading With A Chance of Tacos podcast
“I think kids reading this book will get a real enjoyment from the sense of community it offers.” Click here to listen
“We do not know what to love most about Violin & Cello: the charming pictures, encouraging words or the delightful tunes you can learn with your best musical friend?”
Reading Time (published by The Children’s Book Council of Australia)
“Not only is this a book about music appreciation, it’s also a book about persistence, friendship, and community. A highlight is the inclusion of two musical scores which eager young musicians will be able to either listen to online or attempt playing in their own place. Bartel’s beautiful colour illustrations and diverse community are the icing on the cake.” Click here to read
The Bottom Shelf Edu Blog
“This is a story that will resonate with many young readers and show them that music is indeed a universal language and can indeed act like a magic key, to which the most tightly closed heart opens”. Click here to read
Picture Book Parents
“Reading this unique picture book with young kids starting to learn an instrument is a lovely way to inspire and encourage. Without any didactic moments, it portrays the dedication and practice that is necessary to learn an instrument, moreover, the scores the young musicians send to each other are reproduced in the book, providing an exciting and practical component to the story for children learning either the violin or cello.” Click here to read
Blue Wolf Reviews
“How thrilling! An author who has thought to include musical children in a story book. The Picture Book Violin & Cello is for younger children who are beginning musicians and facing the idea of practising alone. A fantastic combination of three very talented artists.” Click here to read
Story Links – Mia Macrossan
“This is an inspiring story for any child beginning to learn a new instrument.” Click here to read
“The charm of this picture book lies in the joy that the children give and receive when they play music together.”