The Fourth of July is a terrific opportunity for choirs to join forces with local community bands or other instrumental ensembles and help your community celebrate our nation’s independence! Here are just a few great possibilities:
America, the Beautiful is always a hit at patriotic celebrations, and there are numerous arrangements available for combined choir and band. Mark Hayes’ arrangement includes an optional narration, perfect for your town’s mayor or other public official. The setting by Jim Swearingen is beautiful and tastefully orchestrated, with a rousing and powerful ending. And of course Carmen Dragon’s arrangement is a classic for combined groups.
If you want to involve your audience in your performance, try Roy Ringwald’s setting of The Battle Hymn of the Republic; your listeners can join in on the final “Glory, glory, Hallelujah!” Down by the Riverside arranged by John Rutter is another great one for audience participation on the last verse – “…and I ain’t gonna study war no more!”
For younger groups, or groups with limited summer rehearsal time, try one of these patriotic medleys: Our America contains “God Bless the U.S.A.,” “This Land Is Your Land,” “Yankee Doodle,” “Yankee Doodle Boy,” and “You’re a Grand Old Flag,” and My America features “America (My Country ‘Tis of Thee)” with an easily learned original partner melody.