Monthly Archives: January 2011

Tangy Tango – a Spicy Elementary Piece by Wendy Stevens

Wendy Stevens from ComposeCreate, has a new solo published by Hal Leonard. I already know it is going to be a big hit in my studio because it so appealing. Tangy Tango is a spicy sounding early elementary solo with a fun-to-play teacher duet. It is perfect for a first recital or festival piece for beginning students.

 The staves are wide spaced and it uses only quarter and half notes and rests.

It is in the key of A minor but the hands stay in middle C position and it moves mostly by steps with a few easy skips. Except for a few dynamic signs, there are not any articulation and expression marks to concern your beginners. I remember one time giving a beginner a very easy piece, but it was full of marks he had never seen and the staves were tiny, so he would not give it a try.

The rhythm is syncopated, like a tango should be. It is written in 4/4 so beginning students can read the rhythms. However, it should be played in duple meter (cut time) so the syncopation will really pop out.  

 Because there is no text and the front cover is not child-like, this is a great piece to use for every age student.  Sometimes it can be hard to find a recital piece for an older beginner that does not have a cover or text that is too childish for them. If you have such a student, this piece will be just what you need. It is also fun and appealing for young children, especially if they can play the syncopations with flair and energy. Children love pieces with interesting rhythms. Time and again they will pick this kind of piece as their favorite.

 You know what the hardest part of this fun and appealing piece is? How am I going to decide who gets to play it at the recital! 

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Filed under Elementary Music, Music Reviews