News & Views Wednesday, November 14, 2018

“Winter Songs” by Ola Gjeilo 14 November, 2018

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist

“Winter Songs” is Ola Gjeilo’s latest album on the Decca Classics label. These winter and Christmas-inspired works include music for choir, piano, and strings with performances by the Choir of Royal Holloway, 12 Ensemble, and Ola Gjeilo.

Included on this beautiful album are: “The Rose,” “Ecce Novum,” “The First Nowell,” “Days of Beauty,” “Home,” “Across The Vast, Eternal Sky,” “Ave Generosa,” “First Snow,” “The Holly and the Ivy,” “Away in a Manger,” “Dawn,” “Coventry Carol,” “Silent Night,” “Wintertide,” and “The Rose II.”

Listen to samples from the album below, find more by Ola Gjeilo on our website, or contact us for more information!

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.

Christmas Classics for Acoustic Guitar 12 November, 2018

00278165-wlrecommended by Barb M., Keyboard and Folk Music Specialist

Christmas Classics for Acoustic Guitar contains 30 secular Christmas favorites including “Frosty the Snow Man,” “The Little Drummer Boy,” “My Favorite Things,” and “A Holly Jolly Christmas.” Guitar chord grids are included, plus suggestions for picking or strumming patterns to accompany yourself or a group. The melodies are written out in standard notation, and all the words to the songs are included. If you are looking for a collection of Christmas songs to entertain yourself or to share with your friends, this would be the one to have!

For more information about this collection, or other guitar collections for Christmas, call us at 1-800-42-MUSIC, email us at keyboard@stantons.com, or visit us online at stantons.com. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

About the Author:
Barb M. has worked in the Keyboard Department at Stanton’s since 1981. An active folk musician in the Columbus area, Barb also works with ensembles at her church and plays in the Columbus State Concert Band. In her spare time, Barb loves working with animals and computer games.

Teaching with Respect 09 November, 2018

leon-517686recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist

Teaching with Respect by Stephen Sieck
This is a book for choral directors who find themselves in conversations they might not feel ready to have.

“Teaching with Respect” prompts us to ask deeper questions about the language we use, about systems of power, about our heritage and inheritance. When we examine our teaching, we may find that, while we do not intentionally act with racism, sexism, or bigotry, we may be complicit in adopting systems and language that marginalize and discriminate. But since we want to be the kind of directors that foster artistic communities built on respect, we must be willing to ask such questions. And the burden cannot be on our singers who are being marginalized to teach us a more respectful path; it is on us to learn how it is that we are marginalizing.

In this book we look closely at our teaching strategies. How does our repertoire and instruction intersect with our singers’ identities, specifically their learning abilities, gender, sexuality, religion, ethnicity, and race? How do we engage with our audience? The book suggests an ethical approach to teaching choral music that is centered on respecting the singers in front of us. Readers will discover ways to maintain and elevate their artistic standards of excellence while also expanding their mindset.

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.

Come, Ye Thankful People Come! 07 November, 2018

70_2033Lrecommended by Caryn G. and Judy S., Sacred Keyboard Music Specialists

In Come, Ye Thankful People, Come!: Music of Thanksgiving, Michael Helman has arranged six Thanksgiving hymns for organ. Two of his own original compositions are also included, a classic style trumpet tune and a lyric aria. The Aria has a simple, pretty melody against full chords and a busy pedal part. The Trumpet Tune has a merry, rhythmic melody, backed by chords and a pedal part that enhances the melody. Traditional Thanksgiving hymn tunes included are “Prelude on THAXTED” and “Trio on ASH GROVE.” These pieces may also be used at other times of the church year.

For more information about this collection or other sacred organ music, call us at 1-800-42-MUSIC, email us at keyboard@stantons.com, or visit us online at stantons.com. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!

Positive Opportunities for Your Beginning String Orchestra 06 November, 2018

recommended by Dan C., Orchestra Specialist

Once your first and second year students have worked hard and learned the lessons in their beginning method books, give them a chance to play some “real” music that is not part of the book. You can incorporate their class material and maybe some new technical concepts with these wonderful pieces and stretch their musicality as well. Plus your students will have some excellent new music for their next concert!

cfn-pas22-fContemplation by Larry Clark, Grade 0.5
The composer’s aim: “I want the students to be able to stretch their musicianship beyond their experience on their instrument to play in a contemplative manner. It is something that cannot be stressed enough, even in students who have just begun to play.” Beginners should be able to reach this selection technically, but will have to stretch musically. The notes and rhythms are limited, so students can strive for beauty of tone, good phrasing and emotional involvement. It will make them better musicians, and give them a wonderful piece to play for their families and other audience members.

alfred-46715-fSpring at Last by Doug Spata, Grade 1.5
You know that feeling when you step out into the late April/early May sunshine and you can just tell that the chill of winter is finally over? The grass is brilliant green, the earth smells rich and fertile, the birds are singing and the bugs are buzzing, and you know it’s “Spring at Last!” The inimitable Doug Spata has captured that moment musically in this fun, fresh offering, and it almost literally “springs” off the page. At a Grade 1.5, it is very playable, plus it has great teaching opportunities. The interesting, angular melodies with arpeggiated skips will require string crossing (some with slurs), plus you can work on staccato bowing, repeats with first and second endings and counting rhythms in cut time. Two orchestra sections are often scored in unison to support the melody, sometimes pairing second violins with cellos or violas with basses and various other combinations. This spritely selection is sure to have players and audience smiling by the end.

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.

Creative Programming: For Social Justice 05 November, 2018

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist

As a result of today’s politically charged and divided climate, we have received a number of phone calls and emails asking about pieces composed on the idea of “social justice” in some form, and we’ve seen composers writing to this theme more frequently in recent months (as artists do in times of turmoil). Below, we’ve compiled some of these pieces that could provide another impactful selection to your concert repertoire.

Until All of Us Are Free by Mark Burrows, SATB divisi a cappella
Inspired writing and captivating choral textures carry the urgency and simplistic truth of a quote by Emma Lazarus. A rhythmically charged setting for medium or large sized ensembles with some divisi in all parts. “Until all of us are free, we are none of us free.”

leon-526952Now Is the Time by Jim Papoulis, SATB with piano & drum set
Written in a Foundation for Small Voices song-writing workshop hosted by the Cincinnati Children’s Choir, the students message is loud and clear – “Whatever your journey, whatever your beliefs, whatever your dreams or battle or triumph, the time is not tomorrow, or sometime in the future…now is the time.” The music is gentle with a soft rock beat with the final chorus a cappella.

True Colors arr. Jesse Hampsch, 3-part treble a cappella with djembe
“Don’t be afraid to let your true colors show!” A message that all of us need to hear. This iconic song by pop/rock legend Cyndi Lauper is timeless. This new arrangement relies on the strong heritage of the original while bringing new sensitivities that reflect the times we live in.

lorenz-sbmp1516-fIdentities by Paul Rardin, SATB with piano
The highly imaginative text defines our identities as many things, some quite whimsical. It concludes with the idea that “we are anything that is possible.” This is guaranteed to both add interest to a program, and to give the performers something to think about.

Sisi Ni Moja (We Are One) by Jacob Narverud, TBB with piano and djembe
Ever clever, composer Narverud came up with a highly rhythmic celebratory composition. The title translates “We are one,” the theme being that all human beings have much in common. The energetic djembe sets the tone, the piano adds its own rhythmic design, and the singers dramatically deliver the message.

Glory (from Selma) arr. Eugene Rogers, TTBB divisi with rhythm section
Winner of a 2015 Oscar Award, this inspirational song speaks of hope and looks to the future for healing in the midst of great division. Eugene’s “gospel-like” setting offers comfort to the community and motivates individuals to keep working for a better tomorrow. Through the voice of a powerful soloist, male chorus and spoken word artists, the message of unity and hope is left ringing in our ears.

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.

“All I Want for Christmas Is You” 02 November, 2018

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist

Bring some fun to your holiday concerts with these great pop arrangements for choir – your audience will love it!

leon-525312FOR HIGH SCHOOL CHOIR
All I Want for Christmas Is You arr. Roger Emerson, SATBB a cappella
Here is one of the most popular contemporary Christmas carols by Mariah Carey set in a very hip, a cappella style. Percussion parts and a supprtive piano part are included as options for those who want to sing this song but are not quite ready for the a cappella challenge. For those who are, this will bring down the house in your pop winter concert.

Fa La La La La! (Deck the Hall) arr. Alan Billingsley, SATB with piano (optional combo)
A Christmas classic updated with a fresh Latin groove! Syncopated rhythms energize the vocal lines, which remain true to the carol’s original harmonization. A new “Fa la la” refrain and bridge build excitement leading to the third verse, and a key change near the end results in a big finish.

Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) arr. Lisa DeSpain, SATB with piano (optional rhythm)
Rolling Stone magazine ranked this holiday rock song as #1 of “The Greatest Rock and Roll Christmas Songs,” noting that “nothing can match Darlene Love’s emotion and sheer vocal power.” This arrangement equals the original recorded version and will be a powerhouse addition to your holiday concert. Instrumental parts available for a festive performance.

lorenz-524047The Toyland Express by Michael Ryan, SATB with piano
Come along, and I will show you the way. Save your worries for another day. Hop on aboard for a grand holiday. Be my guest on the Toyland Express”. This relaxed, swingin original has a satisfying, laid-back groove that adds a dash of cool jazz to your December concert set. Perform with piano or add the accompaniment track for a splash of style.

Mistletoe and Holly arr. Mark Hayes, SATB with piano (optional combo)
A holiday pops tune straight out of the Rat Pack era, co-written by Ol’ Blue Eyes himself! This nostalgic mid-tempo swing arrangement starts with voices swapping the melody, then blossoms into sweet choral sonorities. “Oh, by gosh, by golly!”

FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL CHOIR
We’re Gonna Decorate the Christmas Tree by Greg Gilpin, 3-part mixed/SAB with piano
Beginning with a simple statement of “O Christmas Tree”, this playful arrangement suddenly breaks out in a happy swing style with an original tune and clever text: “We re gonna decorate the Christmas tree, dress it all in colors bright. Making sure it s covered in ornaments and hit it with a string of lights”. Comfortable ranges, simple voice leading, and a whole lot of fun put this right in the groove for your younger choirs. Add the cool Yule synth track for extra glitter and glow!

alfred-46954-fRockin’ Holidays (Medley) arr. Alan Billingsley, SAB with piano (optional combo)
This trio of Johnny Marks Christmastime favorites is the ultimate holiday medley. Alan Billingsley’s rockin’ arrangement captures the characteristic sounds of the ’50s and ’60s. A fast-paced (less than 3-minute) crowd pleaser!

Sing Out, It’s Christmas! by Douglas E. Wagner, 2-part with piano
This exciting, Broadway show-style opener will immediately grab your audience’s attention and get them into the spirit of the season. Add in easy vocal parts and an upbeat, very Christmassy accompaniment track, and you have the makings of instant success for your December concerts. Loads of fun to prepare and perform. “Light the lights, trim the tree, gather friends and family. Sing out, it’s Christmastime again!

Jazzy Jingle Bell Waltz by Becki Slagle Mayo & Lynn Shaw Bailey, SSA with piano & sleigh bells
Pierpont’s “Jingle Bells” takes a jazzy turn with the addition of original music and lyrics creating a waltz that rings and swings in the holiday season! The piano is a jazz-waltz rhythm setting the mood for festive, three-part or two-part treble vocals. Add the optional sleigh bells for the perfect holiday concert selection.

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.

A Song of Thanksgiving 01 November, 2018

70_1763Lrecommended by Caryn G. and Judy S., Sacred Keyboard Music Specialists

A Song of Thanksgiving is a suite of classic Thanksgiving hymns for piano arranged by Douglas Wagner. This handy volume provides you with music for an entire service: a joyful prelude on “Now Thank We All Our God,” a flowing offertory on “Let All Things Now Living,” and a stirring, fanfare-like postlude on “Rejoice, Give Thanks, and Sing!” Doug’s mastery of the keyboard shines on every page, and, although he intended this book for Thanksgiving, you’ll find use for these stunning arrangements on many other occasions as well.

For more about this collection or other seasonal collections, call us at 1-800-42-MUSIC, email us at keyboard@stantons.com, or visit us online at stantons.com. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!