HomeIn SeriesStaff PicksMusicroom Staff Picks - 22nd August 2022

Musicroom Staff Picks – 22nd August 2022

Classical Jazz

Each volume in the Hal Leonard Jazz Piano Solos Series features exciting new arrangements of the songs which helped define a style. In this unique volume, 30 classical favourites are given entertaining new jazzy arrangements. Titles include: Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy, Op. 71a (Tchaikovsky), In the Hall of the Mountain King (Grieg), Meditation (Massenet), Musetta’s Waltz (Quando Men Vo) (Puccini), Reverie (Debussy), Salut D’amour (Greeting to Love -Elgar), Sandmannchen (The Little Sandman), WoO 31, No. 4 (Brahms), The Swan (Le Cygne – Saint-Saëns), Traumerei (Dreaming), Op. 15, No. 7 (Schumann) and much more to jazz it up!

The Voice in Progress

Forty years ago, most vocal methods were aimed at high school students and up. Dan Andersens’s materials and methods remedy this situation and offer an excellent curriculum for the young voice, giving you the opportunity to reap the benefits of his forty years of successfully working with adolescent singers. There are 50 vocal warm up exercises and recorded piano accompaniments included with the purchase of the book. Chapters include 1) Building the Adolescent Voice–Why we Warm up; 2) Preparing the Adolescent Voice–How we warm up; 3) Knowing the Adolescent Voice: Girls Changing Voice & Boys Changing Voice and 4) Exercising the Adolescent Voice: Treble Choirs/Mixed Choirs/Tenor/Bass choirs. The warm-ups are focused to 1) Breathing; Beginning Phonation; 2) Resonance, Placement & Tone Quality; 3) Support, Diction Intonation, Flexibility, Dynamics and register transition.

Ólafur Arnalds: Some Kind Of Peace

Ólafur Arnalds is one of the most famous Icelandic musicians and composers. With a style set between indie, neo-classical and electronic music, his work, both as a musician and as a film composer, has been critically acclaimed worldwide, earning him a BAFTA award for Best Original Score, as well as Grammy and Emmy nominations. Throughout his career, he has released five albums as well as dozens of EPs, collaborations and various projects. Ólafur’s live shows are often quite unorthodox for a neoclassical composer and have sold out many of the world’s most prestigious live venues. His last album, some kind of peace (2020), earned him two Grammy nominations and reached the UK Top 40. The songbook – some kind of peace – for piano features new arrangements of the 10 songs from Ólafur’s eponymous album, as well as lavish artwork and liner notes. The pieces are arranged for solo piano with the transcriptions by Ólafur Arnalds himself. Transport yourself into Ólafur’s soundscape today with this bespoke and expertly crafted book.

SAM-KLANG: Mozart’s Requiem

This ambitious arrangement of Mozart’s Requiem for SAM is proof that challenging and iconic choral masterpieces can be sung by everyone. One of the most famous choral works in the classical repertoire, the Requiem is a masterpiece whose genesis in several respects is shrouded in mystery. This of course adds to the fascination of a work in which Mozart, raised a Catholic and a devout member of the church throughout his life, reveals his deep respect towards death with vivid musical imagination – his ‘true, best friend’, as he writes in a letter to his father. Mozart only fully completed the first two movements (Requiem and Kyrie); for another seven movements and the first eight bars of Lacrimosa we have the vocal parts and the figured bass. A number of interesting alternative attempts to complete the Requiem have been made during the last century, but the importance of Süßmayr’s contribution to the work’s fame and a proof of its authenticity of style might be deducted from Beethoven’s famous purported statement: ‘If Mozart did not write the music, then the man who wrote it was a Mozart.’ Arranged by renowned pedagogue and choral conductor Morten Schuldt-Jensen, this SAM-Klang edition will give performers the opportunity to have a higher level of activity than in the original SATB version, and in some places a slight redistribution of entries in the polyphonic sections has been made. Despite this, the original orchestral accompaniment can be used together with this version without restraint, and the work can also be performed with piano accompaniment.

The exclusive SAM-Klang series offers basic and advanced choral repertoire arranged for soprano, alto and one male voice- part. Classical German, Scandinavian, French and English SATB repertoire are carefully and considerately reworked for SAM and the arrangements retain the characteristic features of the original movements and have almost the same richness of timbre, resulting in works which sound nearly unchanged to an audience. Piano reductions of all choral movements facilitate rehearsal preparation. The arrangements offer development opportunities for all voice sections, bringing new life and new quality to SAM choir work. SAM-Klang enables youth choirs to gain access to classical choral literature and ensures that mixed choirs who face challenges in finding singers for all male voice parts continue to have access to well-loved repertoire. Discover the full series here.

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