recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist
Programming music from around the world has so many benefits for your ensemble – new rhythmic concepts, unfamiliar languages and dialects to explore, and a picture of the people and traditions in cultures across the globe. Here are a few of my favorite new publications, for choirs of all voicings and difficulty levels:
FOR HIGH SCHOOL CHOIRS
¡Cantad al Señor! arr. Roger Bergs
This arrangement of the traditional Brazilian worship song builds slowly but intensely from a simple, sparse beginning to a fiery final verse. The choral parts are accessible but effective for choirs large and small. Improvised hand percussion can be added easily. An IPA pronunciation guide and a translation for the Spanish text are provided.
FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL CHOIRS
Loch Lomond arr. Cristi Cary Miller
Enjoy this accessible setting of the well-known Scottish folk song that features contrasts between a more lyrical, lilting section and a sturdy drone accompaniment. With flute.
FOR WOMEN’S CHOIRS
My Hero, My Darling (Mo Ghile Mear) arr. Cristi Cary Miller
All the loss and longing of the traditional Irish ballad are present in this tender tribute to Bonnie Prince Charlie, the dashing darling. Including both Irish and English lyrics and a pronunciation guide, your SSA choir will shine in this sensitive setting which includes violin (or other C instrument) obbligato.
FOR MEN’S CHOIRS
Vair me o (Eriskay Love Lilt) arr. Emily Crocker
Your men’s choir will show their sensitive side with this lovely Scottish folksong from the Outer Hebrides. Translating loosely as Bring me o’er, dear one, this lyrical work expresses the pain of being far from home and missing one’s love. Mostly in English, this will be an excellent selection for contest or festival!
FOR ELEMENTARY CHOIRS
Zi Zhu Diao (Bamboo Flute) arr. Mark Weston
Add some diversity to your performance with this lovely traditional Chinese lullaby, sensitively set for young voices. Unison writing that moves into easy passages of vocal independence, an accessible Mandarin text, and a harmonically rich koto-style piano part all contribute to a thoroughly enjoyably multi-cultural experience for your choir.
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.