Get In-Tune with your Elementary Music Concert Programs: Change Sings

Why this Book?:

Ever since the inauguration for President Joe Biden, I've been inspired by Amanda Gorman. The poem she presented truly resonated with me and I knew that this book would have the same power. The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous and the text is short, to the point, but full of interpretation. It allowed students to have a discussion on change and moments in history that are associated with this change. It also allowed me to dig deep on songs that have historically significant importance. I also love that the author, Amanda Gorman, is a young person of color and that my students can see a wide variety of humans achieving and doing remarkable things.

What is the Story About?:

The story focuses on a young, black girl who leads other on a journey to promote and empower change from themselves, their community, and the greater world. It explores the histories of the past while setting up a call to readers to be agents of change themselves. 

How to Use this Story as a Program:

Just like in my previous concerts based around books, I used the text to influence my song selection. I wanted to incorporate a variety of songs and styles and to be able to touch on songs with powerful histories. The previous music teacher had a large collection of musicals & revues. There were a few that stood out to me: I Have a Dream, Music of Our Roots, and Together. I pulled some literature from those but I also wanted to have some songs that have been foundations in times of change. For that, I turned to the Justice Choir resources. 

As I mentioned earlier in my blog series, I have students read the story to the audience and insert a song every few lines. I was also incredibly lucky to have our middle school accompanist contribute his talent so all songs were performed with piano accompaniment. 

The Program:

There are so many options for this program! Here's what I ended up on:

I Have a Dream
Source: I Have a Dream

Lift Every Voice and Sing
Source: J.W. Johnson & J.R. Johnson

arr. Roger Emerson

I've Got Peace Like a River
Source: Music of Our Roots

What a Wonderful World
Bob Thiele & George David Weiss
Used steel drums as an accompaniment

I Can. You Can. We Can.
Source: Together

One Foot, Lead with Love
Source: Melanie DeMore via Justice Choir

No comments

Powered by Blogger.