News & Views Sunday, March 26, 2017

Category: Music Education

Plan to Attend: EXCELLENCE IN CHORAL LITERATURE 2017 14 March, 2017

Stanton’s Sheet Music is pleased to announce our 24th annual Excellence in Choral Literature Clinic!

EXCELLENCE IN CHORAL LITERATURE
Saturday 8/26/2017, 9:00 am-12:30 pm
Stanton’s Sheet Music, James E. Strouse Workshop Hall, 330 S. Fourth Street, Columbus OH 43215
REGISTRATION: $20

This session, led by James Gallagher (Professor Emeritus at The Ohio State University), is designed to help you select concert and contest literature from some of choral music’s most distinguished composers, featuring the best in new music for mixed, treble, and men’s choirs at all levels of difficulty. Your registration fee includes a complimentary packet of over 30 titles. Come join us to discover beautiful music and share ideas with colleagues and friends!

For more information, please contact us by email, or call us at 1.800.426.8742. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Mission: Composition 03 March, 2017

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral and Classroom Music Specialist

Students love to compose their own music when given the knowledge and tools to feel confident doing so – but, teaching composition to young musicians can be intimidating! Here’s a great new resource to help:

Mission: Composition by Matthew Cremisio & Jennifer Lee-Alden
Your mission, should you choose to accept it: develop music literacy that won’t self-destruct! Beginning with steady-beat development and progressing through improvisation to reading and writing standard notation, this comprehensive music literacy program culminates in student composition. To assist your mission, manipulatives, play-along tracks, reproducible worksheets, and assessment rubrics appear on the included CD.

Need more composition and theory resources for your music classroom? Find them on our website, or contact us for new ideas! And remember, shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Author:
Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.


Stanton’s SUPER SESSION 2017 28 February, 2017

ss logoStanton’s Super Session
Saturday 8/5/2017, 9:00 am-4:00 pm
Columbia Heights United Methodist Church, 775 Galloway Road 43119
REGISTRATION: $55.00 (includes lunch)

Do you need to put a little “spark” in your choral program? Is there just too much new music out there for you to review? Join us for a fun, enriching day of music education with Andy Beck, Greg Gilpin, and Stanton’s own Jen Sper featuring music from Alfred Publications, Shawnee Press, Choristers Guild, Heritage Music Press, and other choral publishers. Nowhere else will you find such a variety of new choral selections and teaching resources to inspire and motivate you and your students as you begin the school year.

Visit our previous post for information on how to choose the Stanton’s session that is best for you. 

Registration opens on April 1st! Call us at 1.800.42.MUSIC for more information. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Join us at THE JOY OF SINGING 21 February, 2017

Stanton’s is thrilled to announce The Joy of Singing 2017 – two full days of the best new music from Hal Leonard!

THE JOY OF SINGING: Young & Developing Choir
Thursday 8/3/2017, 9:00 am-4:00 pm
Columbia Heights UMC
REGISTRATION: $55 (includes lunch)
New music appropriate for the beginning choral singing level (unison/2-part/3-part mixed). Includes choreography and two spotlight sessions on specific areas.

THE JOY OF SINGING: Middle & High School Choir
Friday 8/4/2017, 9:00 am-4:00 pm
Columbia Heights UMC
REGISTRATION: $55 (includes lunch)
New music appropriate for the middle/high school choral singing level (2-part, 3-part mixed, SAB, and SATB). Includes choreography and two spotlight sessions on specific areas.

Our clinicians this year will be John Jacobson, Cristi Cary Miller, Rollo Dilworth, and Mac Huff. Each director will receive a packet of complimentary booklets containing complete editions of arrangements suitable for both school and community choirs. You’ll have ample time to browse Stanton’s on-site store and chat with the clinicians throughout the day.

Visit our previous post for information on how to choose the Stanton’s session that is best for you.

Registration will open on April 1st – contact us at 1-800-426-8742 or choral@stantons.com for more information. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Making Sight Reading Fun! 17 February, 2017

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist

Making Sight-Reading Fun! by Mary Jane Phillips
“Making Sight Reading Fun” – is that even possible? This creative resource book by veteran middle school choral director Mary Jane Phillips provides many different games to motivate upper elementary and secondary students to not only work harder on perfecting their sight reading skills, but to have fun while they do it! Along with motivational games like “Eliminator,” “Sight Reading Football” and “Trashketball,” Mary Jane offers tips and tricks from 27 years spent motivating students to learn to sight read in the most painless way possible. There are short Daily Activities and longer Friday “Game Day” activities – 20 in all – to keep students on their toes and engaged while learning to sight read. Also included are many sample music examples and a list of resources to use if you need to find more sight reading material. Suggested for grades 4-12.

Find more sight-reading resources for your choir on our website, or contact us at 1.800.426.8742 for recommendations. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Author:
Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.


Elementary General Music Clinic 2017 14 February, 2017

gm logoElementary General Music Clinic
Wednesday 8/2/2017, 9:00 am-12:30 pm
Columbia Heights UMC
REGISTRATION: $25.00
Stanton’s Sheet Music is excited to welcome Sharon Burch as our clinician for the 35th edition of our Elementary General Music Clinic. This is one of Stanton’s longest running and most successful clinics, showcasing the best new teacher resources, song collections, games, musicals and more! We are sure that you will find materials that will keep you and your students interested throughout the year. Get your school year started on the right foot!

Registration opens on April 1st! Call us at 1.800.42.MUSIC for more information. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


I Am Not Yours 13 February, 2017

recommended by Jen Sper and Alissa Ruth, School Choral Music Specialists

I am not yours, not lost in you,               Oh plunge me deep in love – put out
Not lost, although I long to be                 My senses, leave me deaf and blind,
Lost as a candle lit at noon,                     Swept by the tempest of your love,
Lost as a snowflake in the sea.                A taper in a rushing wind.

You love me, and I find you still                                  -Sara Teasdale
A spirit beautiful and bright,                                           
Yet I am I, who long to be
Lost as a light is lost in light.

 

Sara Teasdale’s poem has been set by a number of composers, but this new setting by Victor Johnson beautifully captures the warmth of the text and allows for many opportunities to teach rich, open tone and elegant phrasing. For the most part, Johnson uses three-part writing, but divides into four parts at key musical moments for added depth. The voice leading both in and out of the divisi is intelligent and accessible, and is supported by a delicate, artful piano part that adds some shimmer to the warmth of the vocal lines. If you choose, you can add the optional violin part to this piece; it doesn’t detract from the singers but adds one more layer of color to the piece. Although we know that there are so many pieces for women’s voices inspired by text like this, we really feel that this is one that should be on your radar and that your students will love to sing it.

If you have any questions about these or other octavo recommendations, feel free to contact us for this and any other sheet music needs!

About the Authors:
Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.

Alissa Ruth began working at Stanton’s in the summer of 2016. She is a former middle and high school choir director and holds a Bachelor of Music in Education degree from Capital University. She is an active choral singer in the Columbus area, and spends her free time running, doing yoga, cooking, and watching Netflix.


Announcing SCHOOL CHORAL WEEK 2017! 07 February, 2017

Featuring talented clinicians from major publishers, Stanton’s summer choral clinics are a fantastic way to jump-start your school year! We always look forward to visiting with our regular customers, matching up faces with names of new attendees, and meeting teachers new to Stanton’s from across the country.

Mark your calendar for these dates:

Elementary General Music Clinic
Wednesday August 2, 2017
Clinician: Sharon Burch
THE JOY OF SINGING

for Young & Developing Choir
Thursday August 3, 2017
Clinicians: John Jacobson, Cristi Cary Miller & Rollo Dilworth

for Middle & High School Choir
Friday August 4, 2017
Clinicians: John Jacobson, Cristi Cary Miller, Rollo Dilworth & Mac Huff

Stanton’s Super Session
Saturday August 5, 2017
Clinicians: Andy Beck, Greg Gilpin & Jen Sper

Not sure which session is best for you? Here are some helpful guidelines:

I teach elementary classroom music! (any grades K-6)
Stanton’s Elementary General Music Clinic is perfect for you! We’ll feature new resources, song collections, activities, and musicals especially designed and selected for classroom music teachers.

I teach elementary school choir! (grades 3-5)
You’ll find great options at both the Elementary General Music Clinic AND the Joy of Singing – Young & Developing Choir sessions (see above and below for more details).

I teach middle school choir! (any grades 5-8)
The Joy of Singing – Young & Developing Choir is a great option. This day will feature new music for the beginning choral singing level (unison/2-part/3-part mixed voices), in both octavos and song collections. You’ll also get movement ideas (including videos and choreography notes from John Jacobson), and two spotlight sessions on specific areas. We’ll even look at some musicals too!

If your middle school choir uses 3-part mixed/SAB or developing SATB literature, you may also want to consider the Joy of Singing – Middle & High School Choir and the Stanton’s Super Session (see below).

I teach high school choir! (grades 9-12)
Join us at the Joy of Singing – Middle & High School Choir session OR the Stanton’s Super Session!

At both sessions, we’ll feature new choral music in all voicings (SATB/SAB/3-part mixed/2-part/women’s/men’s).

At Joy of Singing, we’ll present new music from Hal Leonard. You’ll also get movement ideas (including videos and choreography notes from John Jacobson), and two spotlight sessions on specific areas. Joy of Singing is usually about 50% concert/festival literature and 50% pop.

At Super Session, we’ll present new music from many publishers including Alfred, Shawnee Press, Heritage Music Press, Choristers Guild, BriLee and Carl Fischer. Super Session is usually about 75% concert/festival literature and 25% pop.

I teach middle school AND high school choir! (any grades 5-12)
Consider the Joy of Singing – Young & Developing Choir, the Joy of Singing – Middle & High School Choir AND the Stanton’s Super Session. Any (or all three!) days will provide you with lots of new repertoire and teaching ideas!

Also in August 2017:

Sacred Choral Reading Session
Saturday August 12, 2017
Clinician: Mary McDonald
(no pre-registration for this session)
Excellence in Choral Literature
Saturday August 26, 2017
Clinician: James Gallagher

Registration will open on April 1st. For more detailed information regarding any of these clinics, contact the choral department at 1-800-426-8742, extension 1. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Jazz for Young People 27 January, 2017

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral & Classroom Music Specialist and Ben Huntoon, Jazz Specialist

Jazz for Young People, Volume 1: New Orleans & Jelly Roll Morton by Sharon Burch & Wynton Marsalis
Introduce students to jazz through great literature combined with learning by doing! The first of ten volumes, Jazz for Young People includes step-by-step lessons that combine content and audio/video recordings of Wynton Marsalis and Jazz at Lincoln Center artists with interactive student learning, including classroom instruments that every music teacher already owns or can easily afford. This easy-to-present resource is designed for a teacher who may or may not be trained in America’s art form – bringing jazz to the next generation. Digital downloads include: step-by-step lesson slides to project, audio recordings of each song and Wynton Marsalis sharing background information, as well as reproducible activity/assessment worksheets. Plus! You will have FREE access to corresponding video clips for each lesson. Perfect for the general music classroom (grades 2 and up), beginning jazz ensembles and community jazz education courses.

This is the first of 10 volumes in the “Jazz for Young People” series – we’ll be sure to update you as new volumes become available! Find more classroom music resources and jazz resources on our website, and contact us for more information – remember to shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Authors:
Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.

Ben Huntoon is the Jazz Education Consultant at Stanton’s Sheet Music. He received bachelors and masters degrees in music from Capital University and The Ohio State University respectively. As a professional trumpeter, Ben is accomplished in a wide variety of genres and has performed throughout the Midwest on many stages over the past 30 years. He also teaches trumpet, coaches brass ensembles and serves on the jazz faculty at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio.


“Silly & Serious” for Early Childhood 16 January, 2017

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral and Classroom Music Specialist

Mari Schay’s Busy Bodies, Busy Brains series is a must-have resource for preschool and early elementary teachers! Research-driven and classroom-tested, each book in the series contains four thematic units, each consisting of eight lesson components which will develop musicianship while reinforcing general classroom curriculum. The child-centered and playful music-making activities include many favorite songs and rhymes as well as suggested picture books related to each theme.

New in the series this year:
Silly and Series by Mari Schay
Units include: “Silly Stuff,” “Sticky & Stinky Stuff,” “ABC & 1-2-3,” and “Time for a Rhyme.” All lessons are aligned with Common Core, NAfME, and Head Start standards.

Don’t miss the other books in the “Busy Bodies, Busy Brains” series – The Music in Me and You and Up, Up, and Away! – and lots more resources from Mari Schay, including Listen, Sing, Rattle, Ding, Sing, Drum, Play, and Strum, Tube Jams, Behind Bars, Poetic License, and Sing and Play the Global Way.

Find more valuable early childhood resources on our website, or contact us for more recommendations! And remember – shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Author:
Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.


The Resonant Male Singer 11 January, 2017

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist

The Resonant Male Singer by Jacob Narverud
An inspired and fresh approach on building tone and ensemble resonance with male singers! With you as their personal trainer, this book provides daily workouts for your guys to help them develop a vibrant, healthy, and mature sound through proper vocal technique. This resource includes notated warm-up examples and photos with descriptive, enthusiastic teaching ideas. Topics include:
• Body, Breath, & Energy
• Muscles & Movement
• Exploring the Voice
• Finding & Activating Resonance
• Focusing the Resonance
• Tuning the Resonance
• Repertoire/Rehearsal Ideas
An appendix of tried-and-true suggested repertoire for middle, high school, and collegiate male vocal ensembles is included. An enjoyable, yet practical guide for anyone working with male voices!

Find more valuable choral texts on our website, or contact us for more information. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Author:
Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.


American Folk Songs for Choir 28 December, 2016

recommended by Jen Sper and Alissa Ruth, School Choral Music Specialists

As both a choral director and choral singer, folk songs frequently end up being my favorite pieces on a concert program; singing them is like experiencing a little piece of the culture from which they come. Because so many folk songs have been passed through generations by rote, they often have simple, singable melodies and a timelessness that resonates with both the performers and the audience. The three American folk songs we selected to share with you all have those traits, and we feel that they would work well in both concert and contest settings.

bright-morning-stars-are-risingBright Morning Stars Are Rising arr. Audrey Snyder
This sweet melody is showcased here with straightforward, quality three part treble writing, and the opening and closing of the piece provide opportunities to showcase a set of soloists or a small soli group if you choose. The long notes and ties over the bar provide great opportunities to teach phrasing and vowel matching, and although the harmonic writing is quality, there are also unison moments to both latch onto and teach unison tuning. The accompaniment options are flexible (and each of the options works well), so you have the options of performing the piece a cappella, with piano accompaniment, or with guitar accompaniment. If you have a student who plays guitar, this could be a great way to showcase his or her skill.

nine-hundred-milesNine Hundred Miles arr. Roger Emerson
This is one of my favorite folk melodies. In this arrangement, I like that every voice part gets the melody at some point throughout the piece, and, like Bright Morning Stars, the accompaniment works well for both piano and guitar, allowing you flexibility in your programming. The majority of the piece dances around a minor tonality (which students often gravitate toward and enjoy singing), and the pitches are diatonic, making solfege and number work with this piece accessible. The optional cello part adds some extra character and color, and would be a nice way to showcase a student cellist.

red-river-valleyRed River Valley arr. Roger Emerson
The minor setting of this folk song reflects the sadness in the text that depicts a friendship that is destined to be apart. The three part writing is straightforward and well-written, and, from a teaching perspective, this piece provides an excellent introduction to cut time and accessible, diatonic pitches for sight-reading exercises. My favorite part of the piece, though, is the a cappella section in the center; it’s accessible but powerful, and I think students will feel powerful singing it.

If you have any questions about these or other octavo recommendations, feel free to contact us for this and any other sheet music needs!

About the Authors:
Alissa Ruth began working at Stanton’s in the summer of 2016. She is a former middle and high school choir director and holds a Bachelor of Music in Education degree from Capital University. She is an active choral singer in the Columbus area, and spends her free time running, doing yoga, cooking, and watching Netflix.

Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.


Classic Repertoire for More Advanced String Orchestra 08 December, 2016

recommended by Dan C., Orchestra Music Specialist

The cream-of-the-crop of this year’s Baroque, Classical and Romantic pieces in outstanding educational arrangements.

Concerto in D for Strings by Telemann/arr. Steven Frackenpohl, Grade 3
Telemann can always provide concert sparkle as his music falls in the cusp between Baroque and Classical. Everyone has active parts: the higher parts have more flash, while the lower parts ground the piece with rolling basso continuo. There is chromaticism, on-the-string 16ths and rhythmic drive – just what you want from Telemann.

Allegro Spiritoso (from Divertimento #8, K213) by W.A. Mozart/arr. Marcia Stockton, Grade 3
A natural piece for string orchestra, this effervescent movement from Divertimento #8, K213, originally for wind sextet, will keep everyone spiritedly on their toes. With its Classical style, chromaticism and 16th note pickups, it is marvelous Mozart all the way!

Lady Radnor’s Suite: Slow Minuet by Sir Hubert Parry/arr. Robert Sieving, Grade 3
Sir Hubert Parry was influenced by Wagner, Brahms and Mendelssohn and passed on his passion to students such as Holst, Vaughan Williams & Frank Bridge. This movement would be excellent for smaller chamber groups where you can polish a sense of ensemble, concentrate on color, timbre and balance and encourage an artfully elegant, mature sound.

Symphony #104 Finale by F.J. Haydn/arr. Todd Parrish, Grade 3.5
The sparkle of this masterwork is undeniable. This exuberant finale, masterfully arranged, is Haydn at his best. As is typical of Haydn, the melody is in the upper strings and the harmony in the lower, but it is still an excellence teaching piece for everyone on the classical style, bow technique, shifting and dynamics.

Presto (from Symphony #1) by F.J. Haydn/arr. Robert D. McCashin, Grade 4
This spirited opening movement of Haydn’s First Symphony would actually make a fantastic closer for any high school performance! It demonstrates his substantial range of invention, organization of thought, musical ideas, and inventive compositional prowess at a young age. The movement is full of rhythmic and harmonic surprises and though the violins get the melodic action, the other parts drive it, so everyone is kept plenty busy. Use it to teach 16th note scales, dynamic extremes and accidentals on G#, D# and A#.

Intermezzo (from Carmen) by Georges Bizet/arr. John Caponegro, Grade 4
To provide an “ahh” factor to any high school concert, choose this glorious, flowing operatic gem from a master of melody. Incorporating triplets, grace notes, shifting and plenty of rubato, your basses will solidly anchor it while everyone else glimmers.

You can find more orchestra classics on our website, or contact us for recommendations especially for your ensemble. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Author:
Dan C. has worked at Stanton’s since 1979, primarily with orchestra music and print promotions. A “working” musician, he’s a classical cellist, a rock & jazz bassist and a folk & country guitarist/singer. His free time is spent with family or reading, gardening, cycling and working puzzles. His series of musical puzzles (RP3 Rebus Puzzle Picture People) can be found on the Stanton’s Facebook page each Sunday. He also has a reputation as a pretty good joke teller. Seriously.


Join us at The Midwest Clinic! 08 December, 2016

midwest-clinic-mastheadby Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist –

Stanton’s Sheet Music is excited to be exhibiting at The Midwest Clinic for our third consecutive year on December 14-16, 2016!

Join band specialists Kent White, Ken Tilger, and Kris Lehman, “The Jazz Guy” Ben Huntoon, as well as technology guru/computer ninja David Ginter and Stanton’s Sheet Music President Eric Strouse at McCormick Place, Booth #1227. Browse and shop hundreds of titles for wind band, orchestra, jazz ensemble, and solo & ensemble, gift items, and more while taking advantage of their combined 100+ years of sheet music expertise. Trivia and useless knowledge provided free of charge!

We look forward to seeing you in Chicago!

The Lowdown
The Midwest Clinic
December 14-16, 2016
McCormick Place
Chicago, IL

Booth #1227

Exhibit Hall Hours:
Wednesday, 9:30 am – 5:00 pm
Thursday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Friday, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004.  Besides music, he geeks out on comic books, amusement parks, hockey, and all things Pittsburgh.  He’s excited to get NHLTV for Christmas so he can watch the Penguins – Let’s Go Pens!


In Pursuit of Adventure: Exciting New Pieces for Band 06 December, 2016

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist –

In pursuit of adventurous (and quality) programming, I’m thrilled to share these exciting new pieces for concert band.  Of course, they’re favorites of ours, but more importantly, they pass the “smell test” – they musically live up to their title and/or theme.  From fairy tale and mythological fantasy to thrill-seeking excitement (and a little history!) there is plenty of variety to choose from, and they are guaranteed to be awesomely fun to play!  Enjoy!

Pursuit of the Centaur
Robert Sheldon
Alfred Young Symphonic
Grade 2.5         $55.00
The name says it all!  Pursuit of the Centaur is full of mythological excitement and adventure (and 16th note runs, triplet rhythms, and horn rips!!); a film score in search of a movie.  Bold harmonies, accented and marcato rhythms, harmonized melody lines, staggered rhythmic motion, and a full battery of percussion propel the pursuit ever forward.  The key change puts it over the top (if that’s even possible).  Your students will absolutely love this work, and your audience will be enthralled.

Skydive
Chris M. Bernotas
Alfred Young Symphonic
Grade 3                        $58.00
This piece starts with immediate exhilaration and velocity, and is full of energy, with uplifting syncopated rhythms and strong melodic lines that will engage both the students and audience. The legato section is representative of the time when a skydiver enjoys the beauty of the scenery. The energy and thrill come back and drive to the end with non-stop excitement.

Stanton’s also recommends:
For Young Band:
Capturing the Blue Riband, Stormchasing, Wild West Saga
For High School: The Dragon Prince, Great Wall (The Legend of Qi Jiguang)

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004.  Besides music, he geeks out on comic books, amusement parks, hockey, and all things Pittsburgh.  He’s excited to get NHLTV for Christmas so he can watch the Penguins – Let’s Go Pens!


Great Resources for Middle School Band Directors 15 November, 2016

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist –

Besides recommending the best new arrangements for band, we also keep our eyes out for helpful resources for band directors.  Lately we have seen an increased (and much needed) focus on materials for beginning and middle school band directors.  I am excited to recommend the following titles to improve your program, make your job easier, and further your students’ musicianship.

Specifically for the band director is Habits of a Successful Middle School Band Director designed as a complete guide to music teaching and administrative elements of the middle school band program, and Teaching Music Through Performance in Middle School Band that addresses various aspects of the middle school band program, but more importantly provides guidance and analysis of essential repertoire at the middle school level.

For your students’ growth and development are two recent warm-up seriesHabits of a Successful Middle School Musician is a comprehensive warm-up focusing on fundamentals and sight-reading, while Alfred’s Sound Innovations Ensemble Development series has been so popular that beginning and middle school band directors were clamoring for a young edition to be released.  As with its Intermediate and Advanced counterparts, Ensemble Development for Young Concert Band focuses on ensemble playing and development at an appropriate playing level.

I hope you find these titles and series helpful and beneficial to you and your band program.

Habits of a Successful Middle School Band Director
Scott Rush, Jeff Scott, and Emily Wilkinson
Building on the successful Habits series, Scott Rush and his team have created a practical guide to all aspects of the middle school band program including recruiting, rehearsing, teaching strategies and more!  A great resource for ideas and inspiration, this is a comprehensive book that will grow as teaching skills grow, and will serve as a constant and essential companion throughout the career of any middle school band director.

Teaching Music Through Performance in Middle School Band
Compiled and Edited by Richard Miles
This much-needed volume provides critical information on creating an effective wind band program in Grades 6 through 8.  Chapters focus on organization, administration, developing proper instrumentation, recruitment, retention, literature selection, and more!  Included are 100 core works at grades 1 to 3.5 organized by difficulty with a separate section devoted to marches.  Together, these works make up core repertoire for middle school bands.

Habits of a Successful Middle School Musician
Scott Rush, Jeff Scott, Emily Wilkinson, Rich Moon, and Kevin Boyle
Habits of a Successful Middle School Musician is a field-tested, musical collection of more than 300 sequenced exercises for building fundamentals.  Perfect for use by an entire band or solo player for years two, three, and beyond, this series contains carefully sequenced warm-ups, chorales, sight-reading etudes, rhythm vocabulary exercises, and much more.  This series presents everything an aspiring player needs to build fundamental musicianship skills and transfer them directly to the performance of great literature.

*NEW*
Sound Innovations: Ensemble Development for Young Concert Band
Peter Boonshaft and Chris Bernotas
Sound Innovations: Ensemble Development for Young Concert Band contains chorales and warm-up exercises for tone, technique, and rhythm designed for beginning band students.  A complete curriculum to help them grow as ensemble musicians, this series complements any band method and supplements any performance music.  It contains 167 exercises at grade 0.5-1.5 grouped by key, including more than 100 chorales by some of today’s most renowned young band composers.

Stanton’s Also Recommends:
Teaching Music Through Performance in Beginning Band, Volume 1
Teaching Music Through Performance in Beginning Band, Volume 2
Warm-ups and Beyond

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004.  Besides music, he geeks out on comic books, amusement parks, and all things Pittsburgh.  He also plays saxophone with Swing’s the Thing Big Band, loves fall weather, and is excited that it is hockey season!


World Music Drumming – 20th Anniversary Edition 11 November, 2016

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral & Classroom Music Specialist

Since 1996, World Music Drumming has transformed lives and built community through ensemble drumming, singing, moving, playing xylophones and recorders. Students have developed focus, listening, teamwork, and respect while having the best time anyone can have in school. Now in over 20,000 schools worldwide, we are celebrating this success by publishing the landmark World Music Drumming 20th Anniversary Edition!

World Music Drumming: 20th Anniversary Edition by Will Schmid
This ALL-IN-ONE format adds the following new teacher and classroom-friendly elements:
• An enhanced curriculum sequence including 20 years of “best practice” (creative ideas and teaching strategies from WMD faculty and participants)
• 16 new audio recordings of each ensemble and song (including new arrangements that include piano/vocal, guitar/bass and xylophone/recorder parts)
• 47 new “how-to” videos by Will Schmid including special Ghana-filmed segments
• 28 projectable / printable PDFs for cultural enrichment, assessment and ensemble parts
• An e-Book with interactive audio, video and PDF icons.
Even if you already own the 1st edition Teacher’s Book, Cross-Cultural Student Enrichment Book and Video, you will want this enhanced 20th Anniversary Teacher Edition with its new features and interactive layout!

For more drumming and percussion resources for your classroom, visit our website or contact us! Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Author:
Jen Sper has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, she holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.


Sparkling Lights! Fantastic New Concert Band Christmas Titles 31 October, 2016

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist –

Last month I posted our recommendations of great new Christmas arrangements for young band.  Now that marching season is basically over, I’d like to share our favorite new pieces for high school.  They all happen to be about a grade 3 difficulty, so they should be fairly easy to put together in the short turnaround between marching band and your winter concert.

Start by picking up the energetic and brilliant Sparkling Lights by Matt Conaway.  A perfect, celebratory opener, it has the unique distinction of receiving a Perfect 10 during our listening!  That’s right, all 3 of us gave it a 10.  Rejoice the Season! is a wonderful, traditional selection sure to be well received by any audience.  Lastly, I just had to include Christmas Vacation.  We watch A LOT of Christmas movies in my house, and somehow we always start with National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.  While the theme is somewhat cheesy and definitely a product of its time, it has the pedigree of songwriting team Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil and is performed by Mavis Staples (= music education!).  To our knowledge, it hasn’t been arranged for concert band before, and will add some fun to your concert.  Enjoy, and be sure to check out our Christmas & Winter Holiday categories for more seasonal ideas.

Sparkling Lights
Fanfare on O, Christmas Tree
Matt Conaway
Barnhouse Concert Band
Grade 3                        $74.00
Open your next winter concert with this shimmering holiday fanfare.  The melody of O, Christmas Tree is given a dynamic and energetic new treatment that will set the stage for a fantastic concert.  The shifting meters will keep your ensemble on its toes, and the musical result is worth the effort.

Rejoice the Season!
arr. Rob Romeyn
Barnhouse Concert Band
Grade 3                        $74.00
This very clever festive arrangement is the perfect opener or closer for your holiday concert!  Familiar carols are very creatively woven together capturing the true joy of the season. A very expressive and beautiful treatment of Bring a Torch, Jeanette Isabella provides a wonderful contrast to the festive and energetic beginning and ending of the piece. Rejoice the Season is sure to be holiday favorite with school bands and adult community groups.

Christmas Vacation
arr. Patrick Roszell
Belwin Concert Band
Grade 3                        $77.00
Since its release in 1989, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation has become an annual modern Christmas classic with an almost cult following generating recollections of the funniest lines from the film. Stimulate those hilarious memories musically with this delightful arrangement of the charismatic theme song.

Stanton’s also recommends: Brazilian Bell Carol, Let the Light of Christmas Shine

Also now available: Selections from The Polar Express with Optional Choir and Strings

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004.  Besides music, he geeks out on comic books, amusement parks, and all things Pittsburgh (Go, Steelers!).  He also plays saxophone with Swing’s the Thing Big Band, loves fall weather, and is excited that hockey season has begun!


The Stanton’s Difference: Bring Your Students! 17 October, 2016

We know you have many choices when it comes to purchasing sheet music, so we want to take the opportunity to highlight just a few of the many reasons why Stanton’s is the best place to buy music for your school, church, private studio or personal use!

Besides making it a road trip to Stanton’s to work with our knowledgeable staff, you can also bring your students!

busWhile a number of directors visit us on Saturdays or professional days throughout the school year, and some make a summer pilgrimage from nearby states, it is also not unusual for us to see a school bus full of students pull into our parking lot about once or twice a year (don’t worry, we only cower briefly). After a quick “lay-of-the-land” tour, we are happy to turn students loose to shop, and they are welcome to take advantage of our first-hand musical knowledge, as well.

Preparations for solo & ensemble adjudicated events provide a perfect opportunity to introduce your students to Stanton’s. What a great use of time, and a unique experience for the students! Besides finding their solo or ensemble piece with some guidance from their teacher, they are also free to check out a whole host of method and etude books, pop play-alongs, and holiday collections that are on-hand as well.

We often hear from educators who have moved on to other states that they do not have a music supplier like Stanton’s even within driving distance, and many stores do not let customers freely browse all of their titles. Besides having directors take advantage of stopping by the store, what can be better than bringing aspiring musicians (and tomorrow’s teachers!) to musical Candy Land!?

For more details or questions, please visit us online at www.stantons.com, or give us a call at 1-800-42-MUSIC!

Click here for more information on the STANTON’S DIFFERENCE!


It Takes Two to Tango 13 October, 2016

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist –

A little while back I posted about teaching style to your middle school band, and recommended some fantastic titles in Latin, African, and Klezmer styles, and more!  You can add 2 great new tangos to that list – one an original by Robert Sheldon; the other, an excellent Paul Murtha arrangement of Astor Piazzolla’s well-known Libertango.  Stylistic charts provide some interesting variety to your concert programming, place different reading and interpretation demands on players enhancing their musicianship, and may well be the highlight of your performance.  These arrangements are fun, different, and enjoyable, and we couldn’t recommend them more.  Enjoy!

Tango Argentina by Robert Sheldon
Interesting to program with plenty to teach, this popular South American dance style allows your developing musicians to work on light playing and staccato articulation.  Low winds have stylistically appropriate bass lines, trumpets and clarinets feature prominently on the melody (complete with off-beat 8th note pick-ups), and changes of tempo provide contrast while range and technique are very manageable.  Throw in some guiro, tambourine, clave, and a typical tango snare drum pattern to keep your percussionists engaged.

Libertango by Astor Piazzolla
Arranged by Paul Murtha
With an original, James Bond sounding introduction and set in a Latin rock style, this popular and recognizable composition by Astor Piazzolla is a great programming contrast.  The melody will get woodwind fingers moving; counterlines, glissandi, and a brief trumpet solo add interest; and the harmonic changes will help your students’ ears to grow.  Libertango is a fun, light number your audience is sure to enjoy.  Definitely consider it for spring concert programming!

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004.  Besides music, he geeks out on comic books, amusement parks, and all things Pittsburgh (Go, Steelers!).  He also plays saxophone with Swing’s the Thing Big Band, loves fall weather, and is excited that hockey season has begun!