Movin' Up! Movin' On!

by Mike Wilson

Here's a good old '50s flavored rock 'n' roll number to help your kids celebrate their graduation to the next grade or level. If you experience a strange feeling that you've heard this song before... or something similar, that's because it is approximately written around the chord progression used for composer Johann Pachelbel's "Canon In D." Though this one is actually in the key of G. Interestingly enough, if you listen to pop music through the years, you will find dozens of songs that have jumped on the Pachelbel bandwagon. So far as we know, this is the first one with easy handbells for a young school choir.

Yes, pass out those bells, because after singing the verse the first time, the song repeats back to bar 5 where you'll find two options for handbells. The top part consists of easy whole notes while the bottom part follows a bit closer to the melody line. And since we're in the key of G, you will need to either have an F# bell or substitute a D for the F#. And then you get to repeat back to bar 5 again and sing the verse while also playing the handbell part. If it's too much of a challenge for the kids to play the bells and sing the melody simultaneously, you can split the ringers and singers into groups. We have extracted the bells parts and put them online for you to download and print out as needed.

And speaking of movin'... Our most excellent choreographer, Melissa Schott, has once again provided some options for making your rendition more lively. In her video, you will see a full performance followed by a slow motion descriptive tutorial, then a full performance again. She also includes a PDF of written notes, in case that is helpful to you. As always, she invites you to mix, match, change, update, alter, adapt, or totally change every bit of her suggestions so that it works for you and your students. You will find her video and notes on our web site.

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.