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Items by Julie Ford

Results: 138
Title Author Date
Forum message: upbeat SATB piece with "cross" theme
I'm looking for something upbeat and fun for my choir for Holy Cross Day, September 14.  It should be fairly easy since it will be our first Sunday back.  It seems like most pieces with a "cross" theme are sedate, and I don't want something sedate for our first Sunday back.  Something a cappella ...
Comment: Re: Christmas Community Choir Come-togethers
I see that in 1 1/2 months you have had no response so maybe my response, though tardy, will still be useful.  In the community in which my church resides we do something like this right around thanksgiving.  We alternate years with handbells and vocal choirs, and the participants are the choirs f...
Comment: Re: BEST SATB Christmas Music with Harp
I haven't seen mentioned yet Stephen Paulus' beautiful setting of "How Far is it to Bethlehem" for SATB, harp, and oboe.  It is published by augsburg. also Daniel Pinkham's lovely piece "Evergreen" is for unison choir and flexible instrumentation, of which harp is an option.  Although it is uniso...
Comment: Re: BEST SATB Christmas Music with Harp
This piece is DIVINE!  And is a MUST for any program of SATB and harp.  It can also be done with classical guitar, making it very useful for addition in any choral library.
Forum message: Creative church ministry structures
I have been invited to envision a new structure for my church music ministry, and most specifically for a main worship choir.  The idea has been presented for my parish, to restructure its worship.  We currently have 7:45 spoken, 9:00 "contemporary", and 11:00 "traditional" services.  Each of the...
Comment: Re: Church Children's Choir Attendance Incentives
~~"Julie, I like your idea about the RSCM cirriculum. How do you co-ordiante the book work with learing music to sing in church?" That is a GOOD question!  It is a challenge, because our rehearsals are only 45 minutes long.  I have thought about lengthening them slightly just because we never se...
Comment: Re: Church Sanctuary Policy?
What made a BIG difference in my current parish was to place signs out in the narthex, politely inviting people to enter the sanctuary in silence.  We did this a few different times during specific seasons, but it seemed to stick and now people are generally very quiet in the sanctuary.  The signs...
Comment: Re: Increasing student participation
Dale, your videos are great!!!  Thank you so much for sharing.  I am definitely going to use some of these ideas next year with my church youth choir.   Julie Ford
Comment: Re: 1st year choir directing ~ Several questions!
wow thanks for sharing that "Dweller of the cave" song!  I do an annual halloween concert at my church, and always have my youth choir sing.  After having done 5 of these concerts it is getting harder to find cool repertoire to have them sing, and now I have not only that song but a bunch of other...
Comment: Re: Choral Caffeine: The Church is Not a Battlefield
I have to say, I agree with the idea that worship wars are passe, but this article seems to only present one viewpoint; that worship wars are being perpetrated by those who wish for modern music.  In my experiences as a musician who leads BOTH styles, sometimes separately and sometimes within the s...
Comment: Re: Church Children's Choir Attendance Incentives
I have not needed to set a strict attendance policy with my kids thus far.  My group is VERY small but has been very committed.  Perhaps it helps that every single one of my kids has other family members who are involved with music, so there is an understanding of the importance of regular practi...
Comment: Re: Church Children's Choir Attendance Incentives
Personally as a parent AND as a director I am not in favor of the use of incentives for regular participation.  I think that it is used too frequently these days.  We are teaching children that they must "get" something with everything they do, and that things that do not result in some sort of in...
Comment: Re: Projecting Hymn Lyrics
I just want to reiterate the fact that these two companies do NOT cover the same music; so the choice of one over the other would be very much dependant on the repertoire one is planning to reproduce.  Onelicense covers companies such as Augsburg, Hope, and GIA, among others.  Licensingonline cove...
Comment: Re: Everybody's matching pitch - except one
have you used the technique of having her sing first, and then you match her pitch?  Perhaps this might assist her awareness of what it sounds and feels like to match. Does she consistently sing too low or too high?  Or does she sing with a limited range?  Those responses might give clues to bet...
Comment: Re: Projecting Hymn Lyrics
Licensingonline.org is a company that provides the copyright licensing that grants you permission to reproduce materials - sometimes lyrics only, sometimes music only, and sometimes music and lyrics.  For every song that you use, the lyrics and the words will (usually) each have their own copyright...
Comment: Re: How to get choir to take rehearsal seriously?
I agree with the suggestion of occasionally teaching by rote.  Note only does this save money and copy time, but it also changes the way the choir focuses during that particular teaching time.  I have utilized this technique a few times with my church choir.  It stretches them in terms of their ...
Comment: Re: How to get choir to take rehearsal seriously?
One thing that I have begun to do in this past year and it has really helped me to get things started at rehearsal and on Sunday warm-ups is that my warm-up sequence ALWAYS begins with the same two very simple warm-ups.  Now I can start the first warm-up and they immediately know what to sing, and...
Comment: Re: Music Folder Question
We honestly just use inexpensive black 3-ring binders from the office supply store.  Most of our music has holes punched in it, and I have purchased a bunch of magazine holders for any music that is not punched.  The binders are inexpensive enough that I can replace them as they get worn and not w...
Comment: Re: choir anthems for the "aging" voice
St. James Music Press is a wonderful online subscription that, for a yearly fee of $139, permits you to print out as many copies as you like of as many of their anthems as you like.  They have lots of nice anthems, including plenty of things in 2 and 3 part voicings.    I'm in a similar situati...
Comment: Re: Emotional needs in Church Choir setting
A few thoughts: 1.  Do you set aside time for prayer within your rehearsals?  I think this is CRITICAL for a church choir.  we do our prayer time right at the end of rehearsal, so it does not take up any of our singing time at all.  When your choir members are comfortable they will often share ...
Comment: Re: New K-8 Teacher, previous teacher didn't sing...
A great way to introduce harmony is to use partner songs. The book "Sing Together Children" published by Choristers Guild is a great resource for teaching a wide variety of singing concepts, including harmony.  It is more geared toward the younger set (recommended for ages 5 - 12) but there are ce...
Comment: Re: Ash Wednesday suggestions wanted
Hmm.  I take offense at your assumption that my ladies are lazy or that i don't "push" them.  Truthfully they are mostly elderly and don't sound good at the upper range, especially one in particular whose strident voice tends to overpower the rest.  My main goal with my choir is to select reperto...
Forum message: Ash Wednesday suggestions wanted
I am looking for Ash Wednesday suggestions for my choir.  Suggestions need to fit within the following parameters:   2/part (appropriate for adult mixed voices) OR very easy SATB with modest ranges (nothing above D for the sopranos, and nothing sustained in the higher range) piano accompanimen...
Comment: Re: Help with "being myself" when leading church music
I am the director of music in an Episcopal Church, and lead both traditional and contemporary styles of worship there.  Episcopal liturgy tends to be fairly solemn, but what I love about my church is that we can and do laugh in worship, and we can and do allow ourselves to be human.  I believe God...
Comment: Re: music for Christmas morning service
Lloyd Larson has a great arrangement of the Michael W. Smith song, Christmastime - published by Hope Publishing.  There is an accompanying orchestration, so I'm betting you could probably extract just the brass parts.  It doesn't mention the star or wise men, but it is VERY upbeat and very accessi...
Comment: Re: texting during rehearsal
A local community chorus has a policy that requires members to pay $$ (I think $5) whever their phone rings during rehearsal.  Perhaps something similar might be applicable?   Julie Ford
Comment: Re: Christmas music with Steel Drums ?
Also if your steel drum player is comfortable with doing a little improvisation, the hymn "Angels We Have Heard on High" lends itself beautifully to a little Caribbean treatment!   Julie
Comment: Re: teaching the concept of a glottal stop to church choir
Thanks for the great advice, Jaclyn!  (Although I don't think I am the Julie Ford you think I am... :)  )
Forum message: teaching the concept of a glottal stop to church choir
I would like to address the concept of glottal stop to my church choir of mostly volunteers.  In specific context we will be singing Tertius Noble's lovely setting of "Souls of the righteous" and i would like to teach them to put a glottal stop between the words "righteous / in".  I'm not certain,...
Comment: Re: looking for a contrasting piece to a contemporary program
Does it matter if the repertoire is sacred or secular?  My responses would all be sacred since that is the area in which I work.  A perrenial favorite of my choir is 'If Ye Love Me' by Thomas Tallis.  You also can't go wrong with the Stainer "God so loved the world".  Also there are many fantas...
Comment: Re: Inquiry: Church Choir Director or Accompanist?
Boy do I agree with the statement that "blended" worship requires more planning!  We have two services, one "contemporary" and one "traditional".  For the contemporary service it is not simply a matter of opening the appointed hymnal(s) and selecting appropriate hymns.  It is extremely time-consu...
Comment: Re: Inquiry: Church Choir Director or Accompanist?
Does your church not currently have a keyboardist (pianist or organist) leading worship? My concern is the way that you describe the financial constraints.  If you are going to ask a person to do both jobs, then he or she needs to be compensated appropriately for both jobs.  In my position I am b...
Comment: Re: Lenten Cantata
I strongly recommend Michael Burkhardt's "Love Unknown" (A Festival of Passion Readings and Hymns) published by MorningStar.  the readings are by Max Lucado.  The music is hymn-based with wonderful arrangements, sensitive to text.  instrumentation, which is optional, is orff ensemble, two trump...
Comment: Re: Do you pay your conductor's lodging expenses?
it might behoove the organization to see about whether a local hotel would give you a special rate in exchange for being your regular hotel for your various musicians.  You could then make use of this hotel for your director, and for any other musicians you might need to put up.  I have done th...
Comment: Re: Church Choir Repertoire
"Song of Praise" by Emma lou Diemer, published by Sacred Music Press.  Fantastic organ accompaniment; not awfully difficult for the singers, but still fun to sing.  The text is a paraphrase of Psalm 150. Speaking of Psalm 150, Cesar Franck's setting of that psalm is spectacular, and there is a...
Comment: Re: Short SATB choral pieces to learn by heart
get some Taize resources, and some of the John Bell/Iona "shorter songs for worship" books (there are 3). Or use hymnal arrangements of African American spirituals.  We sang the John Bell arrangement of "Over My Head" as our first anthem this fall, and I taught it initially by rote and encourag...
Comment: Re: Searching for Marian poetry to write a choral setting
Mary's Song by Luci Shaw http://adventuresindailyliving.blogspot.com/2008/12/marys-song-by-luci-shaw.html  
Comment: Re: Pitch Problems
have you voiced the section?  How singers are arranged can have a significant positive or negative impact on sound. 
Comment: Re: Need rep for choir anthem with string quartet - please help!!
Ave Verum Corpus, by Mozart.   There are several "editions" of this on cpdl, many with string parts included.  http://www3.cpdl.org/wiki/index.php/Ave_verum_corpus,_KV_618_(Wolfgang_Amadeus_Mozart)   I would also recommend "Offertory" by John Ness Beck, suggested by Stephen above.  It i...
Comment: Re: need repertoire for SATB and guitar (only) accompaniment
We are going to be doing a concert of choral works with guitar this year as well.  So far we are doing the following pieces: "Show Me Thy Ways" by Walter Pelz, pub. Augsburg, for SATB, guitar, and oboe or flute. "He Never Said a Mumbalin' Word" by Hal Hopson, pub. Sacred music press, SATB, gu...
Comment: Re: Intermediate SATB with 4 Hands Piano Accompaniment
Howard Helvey has several SATB pieces with 4-hand accompaniment.  The accompaniments are GREAT!  We have recently used his arrangement of "I'm gonna sing when the spirit says sing".
Comment: Re: Request to music publishers - and suggestions for good sites
Craig, I do hope that more folks will start to make their music available in this way.  I for one really appreciate being able to purchase and print music "on demand".  I guess I'm part of that instant gratification crowd!
Comment: Re: Request to music publishers - and suggestions for good sites
I don't really agree with this thought.  Of the 3 churches I have served as musical director, each has had literally hundreds of scores in their choral library (my last church had over 700 octavos in their library, plus a collection of major works), and there has not been all that much crossover ...
Comment: Re: Repertory for children choir need advice
I would suggest "missa Brevis" (Kyrie and Gloria) by Michael Burkhardt, published by Morningstar Music Publishers.  This setting combines latin and english and is not at all difficult, but very lovely :)
Comment: Re: Hire pros, use 'readings', or midi? Trying to make a sample CD...
I for one find visual score samples more valuable than audio samples, but I am shopping for a church choir with very real limitations in terms of range and divisi.  Do you already provide score samples?  I find midi samples and poorly presented audio samples a turn-off.    Julie
Comment: Re: Are Perusal Videos useful?
I'll refer to my recently added comment above, that suggests that the entire score is important.  I will add that oftentimes perusal pdf scores are print-protected, so a viewer cannot print them.  I'm guessing this might be adequate? J
Comment: Re: Are Perusal Videos useful?
yes!  And to expound upon what Allen said, it is of limited use for me, sadly, when only 1 or 2 pages of a score are provided.  Often the range, divisi, etc issues occur later in a piece, so it's a real bummer to order something and then realize there are aspects of the last page that will prove...
Comment: Re: Music in our Modern Culture
Music as pre-recorded media, versus music as live performance
Comment: Re: Are Perusal Videos useful?
I do all of my music shopping online and when I find something that seems like it might be interesting I look immediately for a sample score and/or an audio recording.  I think the sample score is more useful than the recording because I like to examine the ranges of the various parts, etc, but i...
Comment: Re: How l-o-n-g do we go?
we do a few (usually 2) "pick up choir" dates in the summer, too; I think it is a neat way to find some new choir members!