Choosing the perfect brass band music for schools can be tricky, especially with so much choice from some of the greatest composers and musicians the world has ever seen. So, what would we recommend?
How to choose brass band music for schools
To best answer this question, we should first look at how to choose the best brass band music for schools; thinking about what school children listen to and what might keep them engaged for a significant period of time.
With this in mind, what should you consider when choosing brass band music for your school or school band?
Cater to all abilities: you’ll have budding musicians in your school or classroom who are stronger than others, those who are naturally gifted in their musical ability, and some who simply take longer to find their feet than others. This is all fine, we all learn at different paces! And finding a piece of music which reflects everyone’s (or almost everyone’s!) musical ability will help even the most shy of pupils in your class find their musical calling and gain confidence with their instrument.
Choose a piece with energy: choosing a romantic, slow piece of classical music is great - classical music is beautiful and will always have a place in modern society - but for a classroom full of pre-teens and teenagers, a slow piece of music written 300+ years ago probably isn’t going to engage them as much as something with high energy.
Shine with solos: picking a piece of music with a solo or two is a great way to get, not only your strongest budding musicians shining in a spotlight, but also to help raise the confidence of those you believe have potential but are just a little shy or unsure.
Play for enjoyment: The biggest piece of advice we could give anyone when choosing brass band music for schools is to have fun. Always. Whatever piece of music you choose, in whatever direction you choose to follow, always make sure you and your pupils are having lots of fun playing!
The best brass band music for schools
In this light, what music would we recommend? Here’s a quick breakdown of a handful of pieces we think sound great in a classroom:
- Can Can by Jacques Offenbach
- Entry of the Gladiators by Julius Fucik
- Trombones on Broadway by Roger Barsotti
- American Patrol by Frank W. Meacham
- Mood Indigo by Barney Bigard
And you could even try giving your pupils Star Wars by John Williams to really get them excited!
Giving them a piece of music from a well known film or TV show - something they’ll instantly recognise no matter how old they are - is a fantastic way to keep their energy up and get them excited about taking on their next musical challenge.
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