I had the pleasure of conducting the premiere of my first beginning band piece The Kings March this afternoon. The piece was written for the Kings Glen Elementary School band and was played by the combined fifth- and sixth-graders; over 200 kids!
I have always loved writing music for younger players, but this was the first time I had written for first-year musicians. It was a challenge, but I think I succeeded in writing something that was compositionally sound, had educational merit, and most importantly, be actually playable!
For other composers out there, I can’t recommend writing for kids enough. Every time I saw one of the students from Kings Glen, either from my visits to the school, or just at the neighborhood pool, someone has come up to me to thank me for writing the march for them. They are so grateful and excited! No matter what the grade level, students take enormous pride in performance when they feel that sense of ownership.
Thanks again to Kelly Stratil and the fantastic students of Kings Glen Elementary! Let’s go band!!