The Water Is Wide

arr. Teresa Jennings

Here's a piece for your older singers (unless you have some really talented younger singers!). The arrangement of this beautiful, traditional song is very pianistic in nature, so it could easily and effectively be played as a live concert piece. The orchestration on the recording is also excellent, so you may have a hard time trying to decide which way to go!

Deliberately written in a similar style to another one of Teresa's arrangements ("Shenandoah," Music K-8, Vol. 12, No. 1), the song begins with one soloist, then two. (Our soloists were Holly McDaniel and Grace Morgan.) The piece then expands to three-part choir, part 3 being written in bass clef. (This part is for your lower, changing, or changed voices.) The song winds back down to the two soloists with choir singing "ooh's" at the very end.

While the song is most effective performed as written, it will also work as a unison piece (using part 1 as the melody throughout). The addition of just part 2 would also work.

Note: To help your students learn parts 2 and 3, we have provided separate rehearsal tracks for these on our web site. These are free MP3s for anyone who needs them. Check under Downloads or under Volume 15, Number 1 at

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.