Hey Kids! Get Bugged with Your North Carolina Symphony
27 Feb 2012
North Carolina Symphony Blog
Did you know that insects can be musicians too? There are interesting sounds and songs which come from all over the natural world, not just birds!   Most insects produce sounds when they are startled, or when they are eating, or to scare off enemies or attract a mate. Buzzing or ticking noises warn predators to stay away. Some male insects broadcast a special sound to let female insects know where they are and they can call back and forth in order to find each other.
Here is how some insects make sounds:
  •  Cicadas have something called a tymbal, a concave membrane that works like the kind of clicker toy used to train a dog.
  • Some bugs scrape their straw-like mouth parts against a plate on their chest when startled.
  • Mosquitos in fight match wing beats to find their species in a swarm.
  • Roaches hiss by expelling air when threatened. Bees buzz to signal food sharing and scout bees buzz to point out new nectar sites.
  • Leaf cutter ants vibrate when cutting, letting runner ants know to carry leaf bits to the nest.
  • Stoneflies and Lacewings thump their abdomens to attract a mate.
On Saturday, March 10 at 11am and 4pm, the North Carolina Symphony and Associate Conductor Sarah Hicks will present "Bug Songs," a Young People's Concert which will explore this buggy sound world.

Orchestra musicians will imitate the sounds of crickets, cicadas, bees and other insects. They will also play music inspired by the sounds bugs make, such as Rimsky-Korsakov's famous work The Flight of the Bumblebee. You'll also hear the Blue Butterflies Waltz, The Blue Tail Fly (also known as Jimmy Crack Corn), The Spider's Feast and more. There will also be a La Cucaracha (The Cockroach) sing-along, as well. Dress like your favorite insect and win a prize!

Hope to see you there...buzzzzzzzing off for now!
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