A gift box, tied in a bowAre you looking for some helpful classical music education listening resources?  If so you really should take a closer look at MusOpen.

 In the same vein as a few other notable classical music education resources MusOpen is a non-profit organization that provides users with free access to hundreds of different classical music recordings and other useful classroom materials related to those recordings.  The site is divided up into two main parts, the first cataloging the hundreds of different music files on the site arranged in categories by composer, performer, instrument, time period, and musical form.  Visit a composer's page and view a brief biography of that composer along with a list of all the music in the MusOpen database written by that composer.

MusOpen's File Quality Varies With The Performer

Music files can be downloaded to your local computer or streamed over the Internet for free making this an excellent place to send students for a classroom listening assignment. They also provide a "shuffle" feature which picks random composers from their audio catalog and allows you to stream any of their songs for free.

The recordings on MusOpen are mostly good quality, but some are inconsistent due to the fact that anyone can upload a recording using any equipment and any degree of recording skill.  To emphasize this point there are many collegiate and professional bands and orchestras listed but also many younger groups such as middle school bands and the like.  

MusOpen Offers Free Sheet Music Files As Well

The second section at MusOpen deals with the sheet music that accompanies many of the pieces found in the audio section.  For many of the more well known classical composers you can even get the exact same version of the score as the music you are listening to.  The sheet music listing is not as comprehensive as the catalog at other free sheet music sites such as the Mutopia Project, but it is still quite respectable and growing every day.

As mentioned previously browsing the site and listening to files via streaming is free.  You can also download up to five audio files each day for free if you create a free account on MusOpen.  Supporting the site with a donation of $4 a month offers support for unlimited downloads of high quality lossless files and gain the ability to submit requests for specific pieces of music.

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