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Composition Spotlight: Winter Stars

COMPOSITION SPOTLIGHT ~ by Jack Senzig
 
(Each week we look at one or two of the best choral works posted in the Composition Showcase here on ChoralNet.  This is where we store a treasure trove of works that your choirs will love to sing and your audiences will love to hear.)
 
Winter Stars by Rich Campbell for SSA a cappella (Click here for PDF and here for AUDIO)
 
Level: High School Intermediate
Uses: Winter Concert
Program Themes: Winter, Stars, Hope, War
This Piece Would Program Well With: Three Spanish Ballades arr. Eugene Butler available from JWPepper and Sheet Music Plus
 
This is an excellent teaching piece for an intermediate level women's ensemble.  Getting young ladies to sing in three parts can be a challenge when they first give it a go.  Winter Stars makes it a bit easier by using a homophonic texture and a pedal tone.  The changes between minor and major may be a stumbling block. What an opportunity to work their ears, stopping on each chord to tune!  I would consider helping a struggling choir with piano or better yet, a string trio doubling the parts.   The simple and predictable cadences can make learning this piece in sections pretty straight forward.  
 
The works are available from the composer's website.