Beginner Symphony Orchestra

Writing for Beginner Symphony Orchestra is both exciting and challenging! Sometimes you want to put both your concert band and string ensemble together…and then you realise they learn very different notes in those first 12 months. However, it's a great experience for students to come together at the end of their first year of learning and play something all together, as an orchestra. That's how Dance of the Night Creatures was born - partly out of necessity, but mainly the desire to give these beginner students a taste of the orchestral sound, hopefully inspire them to continue learning their instrument, and maybe one day play in a bigger, better orchestra!



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"Dance of the Night Creatures" for Beginner Symphony Orchestra, by Alison Harbottle - score & parts

Grade: 0.5 Duration: 2'30"

Written for the combined beginner instrumentalists at my children’s school, “Dance of the Night Creatures” brings together your beginner Concert Band & beginner String Ensemble to give your students their first orchestral experience! This piece intentionally uses a limited range of notes & rhythms suited to wind, brass, percussion & string students who have been playing for approximately 1 year. Not every school programme has every instrument, so this exciting work has been carefully designed so it can easily be performed with the most common range of instruments – it was even performed for the first time with no trumpets! Containing simple articulations & dynamics, plenty of unison rhythms, & opening in the intriguing key of G minor but modulating to G major for a celebratory finish, this piece for Beginner Symphony Orchestra is sure to be a crowd-pleaser at your end of year concert!

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