Easter is only six weeks away, and those weeks will be filled with church concerts with choir and orchestra. In this post I list seven works often performed at this time of year. You will want to be sure you have these standards in your fingers. Need a solo piece for prelude or offertory? For six of the works, I suggest a solo from the standard repertoire that will fill the bill nicely.
1. Fauré, Requiem
A perennial favorite and required learning for all my students.
Suggested solo piece: Angelus, by Renié (Feuillets d’Album)
2. Rutter, Requiem
Another must-learn piece. The part is still under copyright, so it is not available for purchase. Fortunately, it is not particularly difficult, although watch out for the “Sanctus.”
Suggested solo piece: Saraband, Handel/Grandjany (Music for the Harp)
3. Duruflé, Requiem
Another French classic. This is a relatively modern work (1947) and the harp part is not as easily available. To my knowledge, it can only be purchased as part of a set of parts.
Suggested solo piece: Prelude VIII (Girl with the Flaxen Hair), Debussy
4. DuBois, Seven Last Words of Christ
An old-fashioned standard that makes it’s reappearance every few years. A rewarding harp part, and it is available from Lyra Music.
Suggested solo piece: Offrande (Deux petites pièces brèves et faciles), Tournier
5. Bernstein, Chichester Psalms
Most often done in reduced version with organ, harp and percussion. The part is available. You will need to practice and count!
Suggested solo piece: Quietude, Salzedo
6. Fauré, Cantique de Jean Racine
Short piece but worth having in your repertoire. It is even a piece you can suggest to a choir director who may be looking to include you. The harp part is available in an edited version by Marilyn Marzuki.
Suggested solo piece: Carillon, Salzedo (Art of Modulating)
7. Brahms, Requiem
The harp part is available everywhere and you will need to practice.
Suggested solo piece: Who needs anything else with this passionate and massive work?
What are you playing this spring?