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The mission of the ACDA is to inspire excellence in choral music through education, performance, composition, and advocacy.

Special Choir

Hi, I am new here. I am working with a special choir where the members are children/high schoolers with a variety of disorders, mostly emotional and behavioral. I was able to do Siahamba (which is simple) with some effort in 3 voices [they eventually got it], and I am also doing Viva la Vida by Coldplay (they absolutely love it as it is simple and uplifting).
 
I am looking for more repertoire. Mostly 1-2 parts (3 parts only if really easy).
- It needs to be fun as they get bored and will simply walk out get agitated (yeah!)
- It can be a pop/rock song (but I am also looking for alternatives)
- No one reads music
- It can't be complicated as they will get frustrated
- I have a pianist accompaning (some simple a capella sugestions are welcome though)
 
Children are ages 8-16. I have more girls and young boys (singing alto and soprano) and a couple of basses + a few baritones.
 
Sorry for all the 'parameters'.
Your suggestions are very welcomed and  am eager to hear/try them!
 
MANY THANKS!
Mario
 
Replies (8): Threaded | Chronological
on February 23, 2016 8:16pm
Would the Dynamite round be any use? It should work in two or three parts.
 
 
on February 23, 2016 8:49pm
Hi David,
I heard a parody of this at Minecraft! Cool love it!
Thanks!
Mario
Applauded by an audience of 1
on February 24, 2016 7:37am
Hi Mario,
 
Welcome to ChoralNet!  There is a ChoralNet Community, Friends of Joyful Noise, made up of people directing and supporting special choirs such as you describe. *Joyful Noise* is a choir of adults with all sorts of challenges, based in New Jersey and Delaware, which has performed for ACDA conferences. That's one of the reasons for the community here at ChoralNet...people want to know how to start their own Joyful Noise Clone in their own community.  In the Friends of Joyful Noise community, there are repertoire suggestions as well as directing and behavior techniques for this population.
 
Composers Nick Page, a regular CN poster, and Alice Parker (yes, THAT Alice Parker) both have composed music for Joyful Noise.
 
Hope this helps.  Please join Friends of Joyful Noise and post your question.  There are sure to be good ideas...these are the greatest people!
 
Marie
Applauded by an audience of 1
on February 24, 2016 12:46pm
Hi Marie,
 
Thanks for your reply and great info!!! It makes me feel 'not alone' to know about this resource. I will definitely join and explore.
 
Sincerely,
 
Mario
on February 24, 2016 7:56am
Hi Mario,
Give a listen to my patriotic song "The Spirit of America," which is easy to sing, and has been embraced enthusiastically by students and teachers across America. This song is on the home page of my website www.AmericasSongwriter.com. Just send me an email for free sheet music and free instrumental accompaniment tracks.
Best wishes,
Hank Fellows
hank(a)hankfellows.com
on February 24, 2016 9:25am
Hello Mario, Please e-mail me at dorothyhstudio(a)gmail.com & look at my 2 part songs written for children with limited abilities in mind. If you leave me your name and address I will send you a free perusal copy. The Hello song moved an autistic student to say his first word "Hello". His mother said it was the first time she had ever heard him speak. I wrote this music for just this reason. Go to the composer's showcase under my name to see & hear 2 songs from the set. Dorothy Harwood
on February 24, 2016 9:52am
Mario I love it that you are doing this. Everyone needs to make music. I have done a couple of choirs like this and we were able to use Orff Instruments and Pentatonic scales and actually write some of our music. A pianist is a great boon! I proposed a subject, the students up with short phrases that were meaningful to them about the subject. Then we dcided which were important words, discussed whether they should be high notes or low notes, devised a refrain, accompaniment, etc. They were really engaged. Sometimes we just said the verses, sometimes solos, just plan it and let them have a say. It worked well for me, may work for you. 
Applauded by an audience of 1
on February 24, 2016 12:50pm
Hi Virginia, thanks for the reply! I will try what you are suggesting as a way to get them involved.
Mario
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