This is a really fun piece that will challenge but be achievable at the end of the first year. Everything stays in standard 1st position fingerings with mostly stepwise motion with skips to open strings, though there are a few quicker notes to challenge the left hand. There’s a lot of interplay between the high and low voices, which gives each section the opportunity to work on listening to the whole ensemble and counting through rests. Rhythms will be mostly straightforward for this level, with one syncopated example at 24 – I like to teach this rhythm with the text “Pass the tasty chocolate chip cookie.” Last, there’s some fun unusual techniques, including a glissando in the cello/bass and the instructions to “Start high on the (E/A/D) string and play 8 notes, each lower than the last” for upper strings. These should be kept random, chaotic, and fun. I hope your students enjoy The Gladiator!
You can view a preview of the score here
Duration: 1 minute 55 seconds
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