Music Class

by Teresa Jennings

Once you hear this infectious song, you will understand our excitement about it. Not only does it shine a spotlight on our very own world of music education, but it does it with energy, enthusiasm, and style! It has quickly become one of our favorite pieces ever. Being a music professional, you will no doubt immediately recognize the Broadway flavor of the tune. This makes it perfect for an opening song, should you choose to use it that way. Our intention was to feature it as the opener of this year's new musical (also called Music Class), which we will be publishing in its entirety in the first three issues of this year's Music K-8. But because of its universal appeal, you can use it any way you like. (The script and teacher's guide will be in the third issue, so stay tuned!)

The song offers opportunities for several soloists. These are optional, of course. The way we did it on our Performance/Accompaniment recording was to start with one soloist at measure 5, then switch every four bars, as indicated on the music. You could do the same, or use only one soloist, or even two. Or just let everyone sing. At measure 21 the first time, we started with a new soloist, then added another one or two or three every couple of bars until everyone was in at measure 30. This cumulative effect is very "Broadway" and lots of fun to pull off in a performance. But again, if it's better for your situation, just let everyone sing at measure 21 instead. In any event, be sure they enunciate here both times. The words are very, very important. You definitely want your audience and administration to get the message!

After the D.S., when you get to measure 30 again, the song breaks into two parts (optional) with a sort of call and response. Talk about exciting musical moments! Be sure your singers put their all into it - big smiles, big gestures (if you have room for it), lots of gusto! If you don't have the singers in your class to do part 2, it is covered instrumentally on the recording just in case. But it's so much fun, you might want to draft a few older students or even other teachers and friends to help out.

Speaking of the recording, we'd like to suggest that you let your students just listen to the instrumental tracks for this song. Not only is the orchestration really neat, but you could use it as a study in counterpoint, instrumentation, form, etc. Or you could just listen and enjoy!

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.