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Help with grades of songs please....

Discussion in 'Music' started by mmmz, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. mmmz

    mmmz New commenter

    Hi everyone,

    Students would like to sing "Run" and "Footsteps in the Sand" (Leona Lewis versions) as part of their GCSE practical exam. Could anyone tell me what grades these songs would fall into? Any help is greatly appreciated.
  2. My impression, from the criteria laid out in the spec is that it is not so much the song as the performance itself that should be rated. Run has a very large range if sung according to the score, which if attempted would put it in the more difficult category. What I sometimes find students doing is singing the chorus an octave lower so it is the same tessitura as the verse, which is incorrect and would, to mind, actually put the song in the less difficult or expected difficulty range.

    I don't know the other songs.
  3. Run and Footprints in the sand would no doubt fall into the grade 8 category with regard to popular music. However, that would be on the basis that they are performed as designed, in chest belt. If they don't plan to sing it like that then they should, IMO, select another song.

    If they are going to just sing it in head voice then you are bringing the grade down a fair amount and not performing it as written. In the same way that you wouldn't dream of belting your way through a classical aria you shouldn't feel you can reverse the theory and sing pop with classical vocal technique - for exam purposes. It's a bit like pedalling your way through a piano piece to cover up lack of finger legato ability when the piece should be performed dry. If they do plan on singing it as written then I hope that they are technically very, very, sound.
    I would also ensure that they are capable of doing justice to the melisma work, rather than just blending them into one long bend!!
    London College of Music amongst others offers exams in popular music vocals, they offer suggested material at certain grades, not sure if this is of any help to you.

    If you click the first item on this search and scroll to page 34 of the download it might give you some ideas.


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