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AS Level Music - Choices of "popular" music...

Discussion in 'Music' started by kieran13, Sep 10, 2011.

  1. AS Music (Edexcel)
    I am new to teaching A-Level. This term I will be tutoring Unit 1 - Performing Music.
    Please can anyone who has taught this unit over the past couple of years suggest some possible pieces of popular music for vocalists that they found to be suitable?
    At the moment I am thinking along the lines of Cole Porter, George Gershwin...that kind of thing, but I would love some more contemporary pieces.
    My concern is ensuring that the music has sufficient technical qualities.

    Any suggestions or guidance would be gratefully received.

    Thanks.
     
  2. AS Music (Edexcel)
    I am new to teaching A-Level. This term I will be tutoring Unit 1 - Performing Music.
    Please can anyone who has taught this unit over the past couple of years suggest some possible pieces of popular music for vocalists that they found to be suitable?
    At the moment I am thinking along the lines of Cole Porter, George Gershwin...that kind of thing, but I would love some more contemporary pieces.
    My concern is ensuring that the music has sufficient technical qualities.

    Any suggestions or guidance would be gratefully received.

    Thanks.
     
  3. I often use the rock school exam pieces. Also the edexcel website has a pdf file which has a list of graded pieces for all instruments.
     
  4. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

  5. I sent my singers off with a copy of the booklet suggested by Florian last year. There are many of their favourite songs from shows and popular music at an appropriate level. Just be careful that they don't get (all too common) arrangements where the melody line is thumped out in the piano accompaniment (presumably also counts for Puccini arias [​IMG]) or if they do, encourage your accompanist not to play that part. Also be aware that the criteria for assessing singers are much harsher than GCSE, which tends to annoy teachers - they always bring it up at the annual AS/A2 course.
     
  6. Thanks for your replies all.
    I take muso-tim's point on board regarding GCSE/AS progression.
    I think will stick to show tunes in the main for this term to be safe and keep the students somewhere within fair frames of reference.
    On 1st impression I do not feel my current AS cohort seem very well prepared by their GCSE experience.

    There are some bizarre "popular" song choices in that Edexcel booklet.
    Only 2 Beatles songs in the whole of that huge list is very odd. Surely they are an excellent starting point for young people to learn vast amounts about music - more so than a barrage of Handel and Haydn? (which also have their place of course - but with balance)
    I do find it sad that more time is not invested by exam boards in representing contemporary popular music.
    It would not cheapen the qualification.
    Music, like language, does have to have solid roots - but it should also evolve.
     
  7. Oh, and out of interest, what did your singers pick last year muso-tim?

    thanks.
     
  8. Thank you - very helpful.
     

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