Currently our ward choir is working on a nice SATB arrangement of Be Still, My Soul, arranged by Larry Beebe (I’m the accompanist, and I will need to work on the right hand triplets!). The Beebes are actually not far from us, up in Independence, Missouri, while we are in Lee’s Summit. Both in Jackson County.
For a funeral tomorrow I am accompanying a solo male singer and violinist on Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee, arranged by Tabernacle Choir organist Bonnie Goodliffe. It is intended for choir, but I think it would work well either for a choir or soloist/duet. It is a nice simple, but solid arrangement that can be put together quickly, although I admit I struggle a little with the C flats in the opening section since it starts in G flat major (6 flats).
So that is what we are currently working on. Please share what your choir is doing.
I have finally updated the links on the Great Sources of Choir Music page. I was looking for some arrangements for a funeral and realized that many of the links have gone the way of the web and have disappeared, or moved somewhere I cannot find. The list should no longer have any dead links. I’ve also added a link to http://freeldssheetmusic.org/ which is an amazing index where you can search across many sites!
On a positive note, I recently received a nice email from Michael Young, a music teacher, composer and member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir! He recently started a site for his ward choir arrangements called The Song of the Righteous. It can be found at: http://thesongoftherighteous.wordpress.com.
I just happened upon a great source of free LDS music at where else but lds.org! Each year the Church accepts submissions of music and then selects some that they like and they post ones you can use here: Music Selections from Past Submissions.
For choral music look under the section titled “Hymn Arrangments” (Ann Kapp Andersen’s arrangement of Come come Ye Saints, for example).
So it has been an embarrassingly long time since my last post. I am no longer ward choir director, and went for several years as a ward choir member. Now I am ward choir pianist. For my post back from the dead I thought I would highlight a series of books that our ward choir has been using over the past few months that I’ve really enjoyed, Hymn Arrangements for the LDS Choir. We have Volume 1 and Volume 2. When searching for these, I just found there is also a Volume 3. These arrangements are by Linda Chapman and Bonnie Heidenreich, whom I did not know before playing these arrangements.
I’m highlighting these because I have been really pleasantly surprised with how creative they are and how fun they have been to put together. These are similar to the Hymnplicity or Hymnals+ arrangements in that you only need to buy a copy of the music for the choir director and the pianist — the parts are included in the book and may be copied. The arrangements have a lot of character and at the same time are not overly difficult (although some of the piano parts are challenging).
UPDATE: As mentioned in the comments, these are now all available for FREE! See http://www.chapelmusiconline.com/
In honor of the Olympics being in Canada, I’d like to share a site I found recently with some nice arrangements by Andrew Hawryluk, a Canadian musician:
Music By Andrew.
We were looking for a nice arrangement of Did you Think to Pray and were quite impressed by his arrangement.
I know this is probably too late for this season, but if you need a musical number for Christmas and would like to do something new that can be worked up fairly quickly (with a good pianist), there is a nice Christmas song in the December New Era this year: Little Baby by Traci Law.
It is a lullaby that has a pretty melody and simple but poignant lyrics. The highest note is an E so it is in the range of a soprano or tenor. The piano part is nicely arranged, though it is somewhat difficult in that the second half is written in the key of E (4 sharps).