Choral Repertoire Recommendations from the Members of the Crescendo Community
Inside of the Crescendo Community, I recently asked for input and suggestions of favourite choral repertoire that others could refer to as we all transition to working with singers again. Here are many thoughts, ideas, and choral repertoire suggestions from Crescendo Community members.
There is a strong focus on Australian composers and primary age groups, but I’m sure no matter what age you teach, you can find something suitable for your groups in this list too!
Thank you to everyone who shared their suggestions!
Some responses have been lightly edited for clarity.
Choral Repertoire List – Feb 2022
I really like “O Moon” by Andy Beck and “Poor Mouse” by Shortis & Simmons (from Choral Time Book 1 by George Torbay)Alison Lunnon
Where Go the Boats – Graham Morton – Morton Music & Goodbye Captain – Ian Jefferson – Warner/ChappellMichael Rankin
One gem I am going to use with my Year 1 choir is from Denise Bacon’s 24 Favourite Nursery Songs – “Go Tell Aunty Rhody”. These are just lovely for little children – beautiful accompaniments.Linda Miller
As a beginner choir conductor, these were enjoyable pieces to teach and perform.Stephanie Feaver
– Dugong by Sherelle Eyles
– Tongo – Greg Gilpin (percussion accompaniment that students can do)
I’ve lost my homework – Marta KeenNat Tom
I’ve never taught it but at my daughter’s school they performed “The Kookaburra Flies Away”. I think that’s the title, it was lovely. They also did one about an ordinary dog. And I loved their version of “Listen to the Rain”.Chelle Lowe
‘Hey there Johnny’ & ‘Zoom Zoom Zoom’ by Stuart Gillard – both just so fun and the kids love them.Amy Armitage
“Out There” Dan Walker! Great energy, effective harmonies and plenty of different ways to present the piece.Clare Alison
My kids have always loved “The Damper Thief” by Nathan CahillZandra Powell
“Jetman” by Paul Jarman is a banger for upper primary and up, especially if you can get a live band to accompany. Not Australian, but “Inchworm” from Hans Christian Anderson is just divine for lower primary, and has some built in maths lessons that can make for a cute assembly presentationHayley Marsh
“Whisper” by Greg Gilpin was a fave with my 4/5 choir…”Hobble Gobble” by Paul Stanhope with my Juniors 2/3……”I’m a Spy” by Ruth Mc Call was an absolute hit last year and we were asked to sing it again at our Awards Night at the end of the year.Vicki Deane
Sherelle Eyles has a lot of nice pieces suited for primary choirs. “The Lorrikeets and the Rainbow” is particularly good for choirs developing their part singing.Anne-Maree Eyles
My favourites for primary children are: Hobble Gobble (Paul Stanhopee), Some Days (Ben van Tienen), Gravity (Brendan O’Mahony), Michael Finnegan (Jessica Wells), Travelling (Annie Kwok) and The Boy Who Sticks out his Tongue (Ben van Tienen).Ruth McCall
Katherine Ruhle “A Fern”, Paul Jarman “Dreaming in the Sky” and Glyn Lehmann’s songs – all of them.Bev Collier
Eye of the Needle Paul Jarman. Fab chorus and great story.Megan Long
On my list at the moment for junior choirBridget Anese
“Bats” – Kath Ruhle
“Crocodile” – Sherelle Eyles
“Gold”- Music Count Us In
“I Must Clean My Room” – Kath Ruhle
“I’ve Got a Secret” – Nathan Cahill
“My Little Boat” – Louise Pettinger
“Tiger Tango” – Rebecca Lawrence
“Whale” – Geoffrey Dearmer
“When Our Voices Join Together” – Harley Mead (massed piece)
“Wise Old Owl” – Kath Ruhle
“Sea Song” – Ruth McCall and Nicole Thomson….great song to introduce part singing and boys love it!!Jenny Moon
“The Hour I Like Best”- (an absolute classic in my opinion) Dan Walker beautiful imagery, unison singing and gorgeous piano
“Circles” by Annie Kwok – challenging for a primary choir but once again absolutely beautiful and buy the book by Jeanie Baker to teach context
“Kakadu” -Sherelle Eyles – opening phrase just sucks you in to the beauty.
My Junior Choir list for the start of the year is:Deb Brydon
“Shoo Fly” – Katherine Ruhle
“Tiny Bubbles” – Katherine Ruhle
“Mr Gecko” – Jenny Moon
“Rain” – Peter Combe
I did them all last year and they were fantastic.
For Senior Choirs (Australian pieces):Bridget Anese
“Here You Lie (Side by Side)” – Mark Puddy
“Caught in a Computer Game” – Kath Ruhle
“A Child Like Me” – Paul Jarman
“Flooding Rains” – Harley Mead
“How Can You Catch the Wind” – Dan Walker
“How to Make a Cloud” – Harley Mead
“Kakadu” – Sherelle Eyles
“Island Songs” – Stephen Leek
“The Long Way Round” – Bridget Anese
I like:Melissa Anne
“I’m a spy” by Ruth Mccall
“Funiculi Funicula” by Mark Puddy
“Chopsticks” by Peter Combe
“Johnny Works” by Stuart Gillard
“Over in the Meadow” by Kath Ruhle
I really love “Cockroaches” and “I’m a Moth” by Katherine Ruhle. They are fun and quirky. The kids love them. The dynamics in Cockroaches are wonderful.Cherie Treloar
“Enjoy the Storm” – Ian Jefferson … It’s dramatic and intense and relaxed and has some fantastic harmony over a held note, some passing of melodies in a sort of call and response and sweeping movement between unison and part work.Susan Fredline
“Hine e Hine”- arr. Mark O’Leary: I love the pure Vowels of the Māori language and the beautiful setting of the words in this lullaby. The harmony is also delicious, like a warm hug that lifts you into a calm night sky. Some great opportunities to sing small, controlled swells in intensity.
“Morning Tide” by Stephen Leek is top of my list.Jane Iszlaub
Thank you to everyone who submitted a choral repertoire suggestion! We have built quite a wonderful list together!
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