To Make You Proud

by Teresa Jennings

This thoughtful anthem was begun as a tribute to moms for Mother's Day. But as it progressed, it became clear that it could also be a thank you note to not just moms, but dads, grandparents, aunts and uncles, mentors – anyone who has ever helped or inspired a child to learn and grow. And who among us doesn't have a favorite teacher, principal, coach, tutor, counselor, etc., that we want to make proud? If you do use this for Mother's Day (for example), expect to see a few tissues appear in your audience.

If you have time to focus on dynamics, intonation, phrasing, breathing, etc., you will find this song to be quite musical and lovely. It also has a nice build and release that might give you a chance to challenge your more serious students.

Written as a 3-part mixed piece, it could easily and effectively be used in unison or as a 2-part piece as well. Parts 2 and 3 are optional, and have isolated rehearsal tracks for teaching available online. To give you more flexibility, we have also created a unison mix with just part 1 and the accompaniment tracks, an alternate full version with all three parts and piano only, and an a cappella version. (See details on page 74.) The unison mix can be used for learning, or reinforcement in performance. The alternate full version with just piano is lighter and can also be used either in rehearsal or for reinforcement in performance. It also demonstrates how the tune might work if you choose to do it live using your own piano accompanist. The piano part is deliberately written to work well this way. The a cappella version is a wonderful way to showcase the voices themselves and may serve as an inspiration to your own singers to try the tune this way. It's also great to just listen to.

You will notice that at the beginning of the song, we used a soloist (Katy Gentry) on the recording. This is an optional usage that could end in bar 13 as indicated on the music, or continue further if you wish. We had Katy continue singing until the pick-ups to the chorus at measure 22, but we brought in part 1 under her at the pick-ups to measure 14. Then, we brought her back in after the D.S. on the pick-ups to measure 22 again. Mix and match the blending however it works best for you if you decide to go with a soloist.

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.