New Music Friday: Renegade Showdown

In Renegade Showdown, the violins battle the low strings in an epic clash. Hear the twists and turns each side takes as they vie for the win. With a dash of fiddle and loads of drama, listen to the showdown unfold until the final striking chord.

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About Renegade Showdown

This piece was composed to teach students to understand regular vs. low first finger from both a technical and musical vantage. Likely, practicing the hand position with the extended first finger in a scale or scale fragment before starting this piece will help students avoid shifting for the low first finger or creating a poor hand position. The extended finger pattern is especially important for cello students to master.

Included are many courtesy accidentals in places students might accidentally carry over a flat from the previous measure. Bass students will benefit from taking the time to identify sections that will work well in half position.

Renegade Showdown sounds great in a wide spectrum of tempos. Using marcato or accented bow strokes will give even the slower tempos an exciting feel. In addition, this piece is quite exciting at a fast tempo with a cut time feel.

About Caryn Wiegand Neidhold

Caryn Wiegand Neidhold is a composer and arranger for student through professional ensembles. Her focus includes arranging hidden classical “gems” and composing music for eclectic styles, including fiddle, rock, and jazz. With an emphasis on learning technique through literature, Caryn’s music always distributes musical challenges to all string sections.

 Caryn’s background includes extensive work as a middle school educator, Suzuki teacher, and youth symphony conductor and coach. In addition, she has years of performance experience as a violist and violinist with orchestras including the Fairbanks Symphony, New World Symphony, Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, and the Reno Phil. Caryn enjoys writing articles for music education publications and presenting seminars for string educators.

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New Music Friday: The Picnic: Watch Out for the B’s

This piece tells the story of a picnic being interrupted by pesky bees. As time goes on, more and more bees can be heard, and every section gets a turn. Listen for the sounds of the bees as they travel around the orchestra. Most of the “buzzes” include the musical note B in the dissonant cluster of notes. This piece gives your students a chance to tell a story with their music. Invite the students to engage in the drama, looking nervously around or occasionally swatting an imaginary bee in front of their faces. The orchestra creates the narrative of happy picnic-goers having their beautiful day interrupted by pesky bees.

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New Music Friday

New Music Friday: Renegade Showdown

In Renegade Showdown, the violins battle the low strings in an epic clash. Hear the twists and turns each side takes as they vie for the win. This piece was composed to teach students to understand regular vs. low first finger. Bass students will benefit from identifying sections that will work well in half position.

Read More »
New Music Friday

New Music Friday: Aurora’s March

Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s three masterpiece ballet scores, including Sleeping Beauty, are known for their timeless music. Only three years before the composer’s death, the ballet was first performed in 1890. The storyline for the Sleeping Beauty ballet was inspired by the Brothers Grimm adaptation of the folk tale first published in 1330. This arrangement for string orchestra captures the enduring melodies and great depth of Tchaikovsky’s geniu. Because much of Tchaikovsky’s style is not written with articulations, students will need assistance with the bow stroke in order to perform this incredible piece. This march, which follows the overture in the ballet, was renamed Aurora’s March for this arrangement.

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