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Nice new find

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.


1 March 2010 at 11:03 pm 4 comments

Little Baby

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).

You can get an mp3 file of the piano and vocals: Little Baby (piano and vocals) or just the piano.

15 December 2008 at 10:54 pm Leave a comment

Can you name that tune?

I’ve changed the banner image of my blog to better reflect its choral theme. So, I wonder, can you name the tune I used in the image?

1 April 2008 at 12:50 am 1 comment

Rob Gardner’s “Joseph Smith the Prophet”

I am a listener of Steven Kapp Perry’s excellent podcast The Cricket and Seagull Fireside Chat, and I was excited to hear his recent interview with Rob Gardner, someone who I hadn’t heard of before.  Gardner is performing his presentation of “Joseph Smith the Prophet” with a 300 voice choir, orchestra, and soloists on April 25 and 26th, 2008 (Friday and Saturday).  I was impressed with the clips included in the podcast, and wish I lived in Utah so I could attend the performance (which is free if you order tickets at

I also noticed that you can purchase sheet music of Rob Gardner’s arrangements at his nonprofit organization’s website, Spire Music. I’m not currently a ward choir director anymore, but if I were and I had a budget, I would definitely be interested in looking into these arrangements more.

31 March 2008 at 10:56 pm 1 comment

A Choir Reality Show

I just saw this announcement at NBC’s website. This is definitely a first — kind of American Idol meets Ward Choir.


Two-Hour Premiere, Monday, December 17 ( 8/7c ) , then airing Tuesday, December 18 ( 8/7c ), Wednesday, December 19 ( Special Two-Hours, 8 /7c ) with the final competition on Thursday, December 20 (8 /7c )

‘CLASH OF THE CHOIRS’ JOINS THE NBC HOLIDAY LINEUP WITH A LIVE FOUR-NIGHT MUSICAL EVENT – In an exciting four-night event series, “Clash of the Choirs,” will follow five celebrity artists back to their hometowns to assemble an amateur choir and prepare them to compete live in studio for the title of America’s best choir. From December 17-20 the show will feature music genres ranging from current pop hits to holiday classics and the choir hopefuls will be judged each night by viewers watching at home.


The show now has a website:

Hmmm – looks like it is going to be really pop-py.

3 November 2007 at 5:48 pm 2 comments

New discoveries – More excellent free arrangements. You can hear a recording of Silent Night at his website of his arrangement. I wish I had discovered it a little earlier this year! The arrangement would be appropriate for sacrament meeting. Good stuff.

23 December 2006 at 11:59 am 2 comments

Abide with Me at Ward Conference

Last week we sang David Naylor’s arrangement of Abide with Me at our Ward Conference. The a’capella verse (second) has some nice harmonies that are a little adventurous without pushing the boundaries. We had a great turnout for the performance and I was quite pleased with how it sounded. If we could just get that many people coming every week to rehearsal! We rehearsed briefly before our 9:00 Sacrament Meeting at 8:30 AM, and the calls one of our choir stalwarts made the night before paid off; we had about 20 singers.

It does make me wonder though if it is frustrating to the choir members who attend rehearsals faithfully. I think in some ways they are glad to get the extra voices along side them, although even with the boost they do carry the weight with their familiarity with the music. Sometimes I wonder if instituting a “no performing unless you attend rehearsal at least one or two weeks ahead” might boost rehearsal attendance. However, I haven’t been willing to risk the other possibility: that our choir ends up being more like a quintet at the performance.

Does requiring a level of attendance at rehearsals help? For some people (the ringers) I know they can come in and perform last minute, but I wonder if this actually contributes to non-attendance at rehearsals.

25 September 2006 at 7:42 am Leave a comment

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