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COMPILATION: National Anthem arrangements

Dear friends --

Here was my original post, with results below -- a few folks sent me Finale
or pdf files (or hard copies) of arrangements they had done -- if you
contact me, I will forward contact information for those individuals -- any
questions, please contact me.
I am looking for a simple setting of the Star Spangled banner, appropriate
for high school singers, limited or no divisi. I could easily grab one out
of a hymnal, but thought there might be something better known to you, which
you would kindly make known to me!

Thanks in advance --

Dave Stuntz
Durham, NC

Try Russell Robinson's arrangement, I believe its with Leonard. It's simple,
has no bells or whistles and is guaranteed not to offend anyone.
Personally I prefer the Lloyd Pfautsch arrangement - some divisi but which
can mostly be ignored. The cheesy "America" blurb at the beginning of it is
easily removed. A cappella.
Here is Ward Jamison's. Don't know what you consider difficult.
We've used an arrangement by James McKelvey. It's unaccompanied and works
well. I THINK it is published by Mark Foster.
Attached is a little arrangement I did for my community choir that seems to
work pretty well, and doesn't "get in the way" of the audience singing
My favorite that I have used for several years is "The Star Spangled Banner"
arranged by Frank Sargent, and published by Oxford. My choirs, both at the
high school level and the college level, have loved this arrangement. Frank
was the choral director at Highland Park HS in Dallas for many years, and is
now in Phoenix.
By "no divisi", I assume you mean SATB only with no divisi. If that is the
case, I would like to recommend Russ Robinson's arrangement. It has some
nice harmonies, some unison singing with the men, and a fun ending.
I have an easy two-part arrangement of the national anthem, which can be
done SA, TB, or men/women. It was published by Twin Elm Publishing, but I'm
not sure whether they are still in business. If you're interested, send me
a mailing address, and I'll be happy to send you a copy.
I use Robert Edgerton's arrangement. It does requirement strong men's
voices but it is not difficult...the men get the melody in the opening. I
have used this arrangement for years.
I wrote a very good arrangement for my college ensemble, singable a cappella
very effectively and used as such for basketball games, but traditional
enough to sing along with any standard Bb band or orchestra arrangements and
used as such at football games. Unison, 2-part, and 4-part. Traditional
enough to satisfy those who don't appreciate Roseanne or gospel licks, but
not the same old same old, and written by someone who specializes in vocal
arranging. Assumes altos with head voice, although you can always bump some
of them down for a few measures.
Have you looked at Stravinsky's arrangement? It's published and not too
hard. I don't remember if it has any divisi or not.
I have one that I think should work fine. If you can give me your mailing
address I'll send it off to you today.
You might consider a trip to your local karaoke store. I have a patriotic
karaoke CD with a terrifc orchestral accompaniment, AND it plays just one
verse. It has a good introduction, and standard harmonization. My school is
in the midst of construction/rennovation, and I've had to pack away a good
deal already. Otherwise I'd tell you the exact CD name. I can tell you that
the cover is predominantly blue. The collection includeds Lee Greenwood's
"God Bless the USA." OK, I found it online. The CD is Pocket Songs Karaoke
CDG #1335 - Patriotic Songs
I wrote an arrangement (SATB) for a high school madrigal singers group that
toured Australia in 1974. We sang it at the beginning of every concert. It
is not published, and I would gladly send or fax a copy to you for your
perusal or use. It is the key of Bb, but we usually performed it in B.
There is one high Bb (or B) for a first soprano; otherwise the ranges are
Rodney Wynkoop at Duke did the best arrangement of National Anthem that I've
ever seen. Not exactly what I'd call simple, though.
I have had a group of high school men sing David Dickau's arrangement of the
Star-Spangled Banner and it has worked well.
I have been teaching High School Choir since 1988 and have also searched
for a variety of arrangements of the National Anthem. The arrangement that
we continually use is one that I wrote. To this day, the kids take it with
them and use it in their respective college choirs as well. I would be
happy to send you a copy.
Are you still in need of an arrangement? Our director has put together a
fine version, but not SATB. She assumes you would want it for 4 part. If
you are interested in her 3 part treble, let me know.
I have three (3) arrangements of The Star-Spangled Banner in my library:

a) 1918 Service Edition published by MENC about 25 years ago.
It is the standard SATB (hymn-like) version. 3 or 4 stanzas of the
text are included.

b) The Star-Spangled Banner / Arr. Russell Robinson / SATB / Studio PR
Warner Bros. SV9722. Pretty straight forward.

c) The Star-Spangled Banner / Arr. Robert Edgerton / SATB with optional
Trumpet solo / Coronet Press / Theodore Presser 392-41703. This is
a concert arrangement with a lot of liberties. Some soprano divisi.
Requires a good trumpet player. I have heard this done successfully by
high school and college choirs. Dr. Robert Edgerton retired from
Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. He conducted NC All-State
choirs on numerous occasions.
I saw your posting on Choral Net, and I wanted to let you know that we
publish a piece called "Two National Anthems" which contains settings of
both the Star Spangled Banner, and O Canada. The product number is
There's a great one by Jerry Rubino, published by Oxford. It might be a
little difficult for your group, but it's one I recommend.

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