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Looking for Good Repetoire for A Small Women's Church Ensemble.....

Hello All,
I sing at a local Lutheran church as a paid soloist, and as I am pursuing a B.M. in Music Education, the music minister of the church suggested some time ago that I form a small ensemble to work with privately to gain some teaching/conducting experience. Now that Summer has come, I've got the time to get this project "up-and-running", so we will begin rehearsals next week. I've looked through my repetoir to find some pieces to begin working on, but everything that I have is far too difficult.
The group consists of 12 singers(SSAA). Several of them have musical backgrounds, but the majority of the singers do not have a great deal of experience.
I would like to choose several diverse, manageable pieces of music. Nothing that will be beyond their grasp, but selections that will be interesting and rewarding to the singers.
If anyone has any suggestions on some possible choices of music, or has had experience with a group like this and would like to offer some "pointers", it would be GREATLY appreciated. =)
on June 3, 2010 10:26pm
 Brady, take a look at Ruth Elaine Schram's "How Can I Keep From Singing" (Brilee Music Pub.), for SSA.  I've used this twice for a small women's "pick up" choir.  It's not terribly difficult, with nice vocal lines that "make sense," and it really is lovely.  Even your less experienced singers should be OK with it.  It sounds much more difficult than it is.
Good luck!
Lana Mountford
Bellingham, WA
on June 4, 2010 10:21am
I would suggest some of Anonymous 4's arrangements of American sacred harp and folk hymns from their "American Angels" series. Published by Hal Leonard, I believe. They are gorgeous, classic pieces to fit many different liturgical seasons or themes, which work especially well for small ensembles but are also suitable for choirs. You can also look at the public domain Southern Harmony online (, which are the original mixed-voice shape-note arrangements, but can easily be modified for treble voices depending on the range of your altos.
Best wishes!
Meagan Smith
Music Director, Amasong
Urbana, IL
on June 5, 2010 7:03pm
Thank you all so, so, SO much for the suggestions! I've looked into most of them! Excellent choices! I've ordered several of them, along with some others I've come across, like John Rutter's SA for the beauty of the earth, Laura Farnell's cantate domino. I'm also looking at several of Rollo Dilworth's spiritual.
With all my heart, THANK YOU!
~Brady Weldon~
on June 16, 2010 6:06am
Hi Brady,
go to there you'll find a lot of sacred music for women's ensemble. The latest "In this heart" by Sinead O'Connor is even free to download. In case you have any questions contact me and let me know.
regards from Austria
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