- June 27, 2017 at 8:40 pm #538256
I will be teaching my first choir class this fall. It will be mostly women (30 or more) and around 10 men.
I need suggestions for repertoire for such a group.
AlanaJune 27, 2017 at 9:57 pm #538258
Michael A. GrayParticipant
First of all, don’t panic. You might do fine with SATB depending on your men, low altos, and high-tenor repertoire. Let us know if you find yourself at that crossroads instead. In the meantime, you should get a few fine suggestions of pop and original materials from this site. Here are some of mine:
Am working on a simple arrangement of Beethoven’s “Bundeslied” Op. 122 for SAB choir and piano. See the original voicing here:
Email me and I’ll be happy to send you an advanced copy before it get posted to CPDL.org
I’d also like to recommend my own “Sky can still remember” published by G. Schirmer:
Please also take a look at my collection called “Book of Sonnets” – especially “From Fairest Creatures”, “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day”, and “Why is my verse so barren” – all in free download from http://www.graymichael.com
Hope that helps.
Michael A. GrayJune 28, 2017 at 10:03 am #538264
I have an SAB setting of Wordsworth “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud” that has been performed by beginning high school groups that might work for you. You can take a look at the score and hear a recording here:
keanesouthard.instantencore.comJune 28, 2017 at 10:05 am #538267
Michael J. SeredickParticipant
Alana – The best advice I can offer is to listen to the ten male voices before you choose repertoire. There must be some tenors within the ten males. Three would be fabulous. Great care must be taken to ensure males sing within their proper range. If you want growth, keep the tenors active in their upper range as much as possible. The great error is thinking it is masculine to sing low. No! Find their range and challenge them where they are.
Your message indicates this is your first experience with a choir. Are you an instrumental director who is directing the choir to fill out your schedule? If that’s the case, consider solfege sight-singing and unaccompanied warmups as part of your daily routine. That will help establish pitch and challenge your vocal musicians to follow/read music, just as your instrumental students do in band/orchestra. Those who pound notes on the piano as a learning tool are wasting time. Your high singers learn nothing other than rote-learning that could be accomplished by a monkey.
During my career, I rarely found an SAB arrangement that I found worthy. The exceptions were from the Renaissance literature written by notable composers. I reviewed Michael Gray’s suggestions and suggest you follow his links to cpdl.org (Choral Public Domain Library) for no cost, name-brand composers who have SAB literature of worth, but only if the range of the chosen piece fits your male roster. Yes, female range is also important, but in SAB – males first.
I realize I haven’t offered specific pieces, but without knowing more about you, or your roster, that’s the best I can offer. Summary – 1) teach sight-singing 2) limited use of piano 3) avoid singing with CD accompaniment 4) know your voice ranges for both male and females 5) choose fewer pieces for a program and focus more on perfection of each piece. 6) diction, phrasing, dynamics, understanding the text, BREATHING, posture, musicality and discipline goals will help your journey.
Best wishes.June 28, 2017 at 10:05 am #538272
“Dreams Of Thee” by Eric Barnum is a gorgeous piece.June 28, 2017 at 10:54 am #538276
I wrote a “concert round” that was built to accommodate this sort of need: Here’s the link to Gamaya.
The great thing about this piece is that you can teach it in unison with everyone, and then have each section start the best for you. If you decide to program it and learn it this way, then make sure each part alternates (S, then B, then A), and you’ll get a full texture while also allowing all the men to sing one part. The B section could easily be S -> B -> A rather than what was indicated in the score originally.
I hope this helps, and good luck!
Paul John Rudoi
Composer | Conductor | Tenor Vocalist
pauljohnrudoi.comJune 28, 2017 at 1:05 pm #538277
My “Two Poems of Juan Ramon Jimenez” has been performed successfully several times. It is scored for SAB voices and piano and presents two contracting views of nature and the seasons. Winter Song tells of a time so cold that even cages birds refuse to sing; With the roses exuberantly portrays the joy of spring and being outside. There are one or two SATB chords, easily managed. It is unpublished but I would be glad to send you a PDF file.
email@example.comJune 29, 2017 at 11:14 am #538288
Chris HutchingsParticipantJuly 5, 2017 at 2:06 pm #538667
Try “Two Mozart Classics” published by Boosey & Hawkes. Secular, very accessible, and true Mozart, not an arrangement. Can view and listen here: https://www.jwpepper.com/Two-Mozart-Classics/10609902.item#/submitJuly 9, 2017 at 2:39 pm #538751
If you are still searching, feel free to check out Loch Lomond SAB:
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