Creative Programming: Madrigals

recommended by Jen Sper, School Choral Music Specialist

The educational benefits of programming madrigals in your choral program are many: students gain a new historical perspective, learn to sing unaccompanied in a small ensemble, and are exposed to a different style of literature than in larger choirs. Madrigals are even perfect for your show choir – the part independence, listening skills, and choral balancing are all skills applicable to that repertoire as well!

leon-522803Late In My Rash Accounting by Thomas Weelkes/arr. John Leavitt, SAB a cappella with optional percussion
Excerpted from “The SAB Choir Goes Renaissance,” this single offers simple, homophonic singing through the verse but a wonderful opportunity for your choir to sing Renaissance polyphony through the “Fa la la” section. In keeping with the style of the Renaissance, an optional hand percussion part has been added as a possible enhancement.

leon-523401Pastime with Good Company by King Henry VIII/arr. Steven Rickards, SATB with piano and drum or tambourine
This song, made popular during the Renaissance, celebrates the joys of dancing, singing, and hunting. Detailed performance notes offer suggestions for presenting an authentic and stylistic performance by employing instruments and ostinato percussion lines.

leon-525262The Madrigal Singer arr. John Leavitt, SATB a cappella collection
John Leavitt has established a reputation for carefully selecting important and historic repertoire, editing it in ways to make singers successful all while staying true to the stylistic period. This new collection from John includes “Fair Phyllis I Saw,” “Fa Una Canzona” and “Tant Que Vivray.” Three important and standard pieces in a value priced collection.

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.


Categories: New Publications, School Choral, Staff Picks

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