Middle School String Orchestra and Band Music

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    marian sussman on #193900

    A local middle school has just acquired 2 pedal harps and they are looking for works outside of the Vaughan Williams Greensleeves and Dives and Lazarus for string Orchestra with harp parts. They really don’t use a full orchestra. They also have wind ensembles and bands. Any suggestions, especially those for works that are at the Greensleeves level for the harp would be greatly appreciated.
    Last year, the only actual harp part my 6th grade student got to play was Dives and Lazarus as her introduction to Orchestra. As some of the groups are quite advanced and have some high school students playing with them, I really would like to find works that have fairly challenging string orchestra or band parts, but fairly straight forward harp parts at this time so she can gain confidence and experience. I’m also looking for small ensemble works also.

    I would really appreciate any thoughts.


    diane-michaels on #193901

    A listing of school orchestra pieces with harp parts:


    erin-wood on #193902

    Diane already beat me, posting the list that I always send to directors. I know the local middle school has done Ashokan Farewell with the harp playing the piano part. A lot of middle school/HS arrangements have a piano part that you could play on the harp. However it is sometimes frustrating — I have played a piano part for an arrangement of Westside story and of course it would be so much better to just play from the original harp part because the piano part is so awkward but the originals don’t really work in the arrangements.

    marian sussman on #193903

    I know that the orchestra director will only play the Vaughan Williams Greensleeves with their 6th grade string orchestra as he considers it too easy for the other orchestras. None of these groups are beginning. Does anyone know if any of the string orchestra works listed here would be at a higher difficulty for the orchestra?


    diane-michaels on #193904

    Sorry to beat you to it, Erin. Yay, AHS resource page!

    The first part of the list includes level listings – I’m sure anything 3 and above will be worth considering. The last section doesn’t list levels, but, if memory serves me, most are more advanced works.

    susan-koskelin on #193913

    You might check out a work that I just heard a few days ago titled “In the Company of Angels.” It is for string orchestra with harp, and the harp part is easy but lovely. It is by William Hofeldt. You can hear it and see the music, too, on the Kjos website at http://www.kjos.com.

    sueblane on #193917

    posted by mistake

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