D.S. al Coda

by John Riggio

We use the D.S. al coda concept lots here at Plank Road Publishing. It's a good way to repeat a section without adding a zillion pages to a piece, and this song explains how it works. We've set the tune to an exciting four-on-the-floor techno house groove that should motivate young singers. Singing the concept will help them learn it well.

D.S. is shorthand for dal segno, which in Italian means "from the sign." In this case, the D.S. occurs at the end of measure 28, and the sign is at measure 5. (The section before the D.S. starting in measure 21 switches to a halftime feel, and has a prettier sound. But we kept fast moving synths in the texture here to maintain the groove.) The "to coda" marker is at the end of measure 20, and to make sure that registers with your singers, we have them yell "Coda!" just before they go to the coda. And should there be any doubt where they are in the music, once they reach the coda, we've added a tom groove so they'll know "this is it!"

The divisi in the last two bars is optional, but sounds great if your kids can swing it.

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.