Once Upon a Time… all the stories that we loved as children began this way. As adults, the dream of bringing the magic of these fairy tales to life remained and became the inspiration for Talespin, Musical Tales for Big and Small.
Talespin’s name comes from the 18th-century phrase „to spin a tale“. While working their spinning wheels, English women would invent, tell and retell stories to pass the time. In a similar way, Talespin brings fairy tales from around the world to the stage. With the help of a violin, a piano, and a narrator as well as beautiful illustrations, imaginative new artistic worlds are spun into existence.
This magical, musical picture book in concert has touched audiences around the world, from India to Canada. Based in Vienna, Austria, Talespin is enchanting for children, adolescents and adults alike.

Children age 4+

  • Zekeye and the Little Tune
  • Bukolla
  • How Monkey looked for Trouble

Adolescents age 9+

  • The Wise Daughter
  • Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves
  • Why the Parrot Repeats Human Words

Adults age 16+

  • The Wise Daughter
  • Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves
  • L’Histoire du Soldat
  • Why the Parrot Repeats Human Words

Artistic directors: Johanna Lacroix & Chanda VanderHart

Even as a child, Johanna was a big dreamer. Every day after school, during the tram ride home, she sat with her sister Rebecca, recounting, inventing and continuing stories with her. Every day at home, Johanna would draw illustrations to accompany her own stories, written in home-made books. At age nine she fell in love with the violin, which became her profession.
Today, Johanna plays with a variety of orchestras, working with renowned conductors including Adam Fischer, Marc Minkowski, Franz Welser-Möst, Manfred Honeck, Nicholas Milton, Jean-Christophe Spinosi, Martin Haselböck, Nicolas Altstaedt and Alexander Lonqich.
To nurture her creative drive, she plays chamber music concerts featuring classical as well as modern compositions, develops interdisciplinary projects incorporating dance, literature, visual arts and song, and co-directs the concert series Ambitus-Gruppe für neue Musik.
Johanna lives with her family in Vienna. As a young mother, she particularly enjoys being able to pass along her love for music and story-telling to the next generation through Talespin.

Chanda was named after a Hindu goddess of the moon. Though her parents’ reasons for doing so remain a mystery, it is no wonder she loved stories; she spent hours of her childhood listening to them, reading them and creating them. After hearing “Peter and the Wolf” for the first time, she fell in love with the story-telling possibilities in music. She studied voice, violin, flute, piano, and oboe, but it was the piano which finally stuck.
After earning her Bachelor’s degree in piano performance from the Eastman School of Music in New York, she studied Milan and Vienna, collecting three graduate degrees in vocal accompaniment and chamber music. She graduated summa cum laude with a Ph.D. in musicology from the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna (MDW) in 2016.
Chanda is on faculty at the MDW where she both lectures and works as a research assistant. She plays chamber music and art song concerts throughout Europe, Asia, and North America and is currently working on a book about lieder culture in 19th century Vienna. She regularly reviews concerts and opera productions for Bachtrack (www.Bachtrack.com) and is the co-founder of both the innovative concert series Mosaїque (www.mosaique.eu.com) and of Talespin.

2 months ago
Talespin Hörbuch: Affe

Awesome! We have fundraised over 2/3rds of our budget in just two days!!! Thanks so much to all our supporters and messengers, you are the best:-) since our 5-book-bundles just sold out, there are a ... See more

2 months ago
Talespin Hörbuch: Affe

It's live! Need a great children's gift in time for Christmas? Talespin is making a book and CD which is adorable! We need to raise 2000 euros in the next 48 hours to get sponsored by Bank Austria - ... See more

2 months ago

Coming soon! Talespin makes a book and builds a jungle 🙂 #monkeybook #kidsbooks #Hörbuch #musicalfairytales

9 months ago

Sound recordings for the next Talespin
musical fairy tale! Watch this space 🙂

2 years ago
Chanda VanderHart - Pianist / Musicologist

A shout-out from India to the fabulous composers and illustrators who created our Talespin musical tales! #travellingfairytales

2 years ago
Chanda VanderHart - Pianist / Musicologist

Thank you, Telegraph, for the shout-out! Hurrah for Talespin Tales in India! Thank you Isha Daga for reading "Zekeye and the Very Little Tune" so beautifully, and for @Kolkata Classics Club for ... See more

2 years ago
Timeline Photos

Talespin performs Zekeye and the Little Tune, composer Ruei-Ran Wu, illustrations by Nathalie Dieterle in arrangement in Calcutta!

2 years ago
Kolkata Classics Club

Talespin's The Monkey who Looked for Trouble was performed in Bengali translation in an arrangement for four hands piano, narration and visuals in Kalkota! Thank you, Isha for translating and ... See more

2 years ago

A first today- the Talespin Tale "How Monkey Looked for Trouble" with music by Erica Chun and visuals by Kyle Alekema was performed in two concerts in Calcutta, India in Bengali translation for ... See more

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