Selecting Music: Arranging/Adapting Folk Songs When Nothing Seems to Fit

Presenter: Robert Hugh

We’ve all had those years- your choir has too many “loud” voices, not enough boys, they’re all inexperienced with limited range, they can’t find a clear unison sound…  You try to find the right repertoire but nothing fits. You order music over the summer and after the first rehearsal in September you realize this is not the year for “that piece.” In this workshop we’ll explore how to tweak your music or start from a blank page and create your own folk song arrangement that your singers will enjoy performing. They will “own” the music.

Robert I. Hugh received a B.M. Ed. from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. He received his Masters in music education/composition emphasis from the Hartt College of Music. He completed summer studies at the Kodály Musical Training Institute and the Institute for Choral Music Education. He was selected to participate in the Fulbright-Hayes Group Projects Abroad program. The grant funded a summer in Kenya where he had an opportunity to study music with Kenyan composers. Rob received an Individual Artist Award in composition from the Connecticut Commission on the Arts. He returned to Kenya to continue his study of African choral music. As a songwriter/arranger, Rob has arranged and recorded over 275 original songs composed by children from kindergarten through twelfth grade. He has been commissioned to compose music for choirs of all ages. The music has been performed throughout the United States, Canada and the U.K. In the spring of 2017 two of his compositions were performed by the children’s choir at the O.A.K.E. national convention. His music is published by Boosey and Hawkes, Hal Leonard and Colla Voce. Rob just completed 39 years of vocal/choral music instruction in the West Hartford Public Schools. In 1993 he was selected as West Hartford's Teacher of the Year.


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