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GCSE Music Performance help please.

(20 Posts)
FiveHoursSleep Tue 10-Oct-17 21:26:26

Could anyone suggest something for DD1 to play for her GCSE music duet?
She is looking for a grade 5 or above piano duet OR piano accompaniment to a vocal piece. Her solo piece is a Grade 7 Jazz piece so she would like something with dynamics, legato, articulation etc as a contrast.
She has until January to learn it but is sitting her G7 in November.

Helenluvsrob Tue 10-Oct-17 22:58:44

Does she have to do a duet ? What standard is the other person ?

Something simple like a folk song could demonstrate sensitive playing and contrasts in different verses. It wouldn’t need a very high standard or singer either to be a very acceptable performance.

FiveHoursSleep Wed 11-Oct-17 07:21:24

The other person will be a teacher who won't be being assessed.
They have to do a solo piece and an assemble/ duet.
They get extra marks if it's over Grade 5 standard.

Helenluvsrob Wed 11-Oct-17 09:10:48

I see, have you asked the teacher then. They usually know smile

FiveHoursSleep Wed 11-Oct-17 10:08:55

The teacher wants them to find something themselves. She has 30 girls doing the exam this year and about 10 are in the same boat!
You have given me an idea though!

marmiteloversunite Wed 11-Oct-17 14:08:41

My DD did GCSE music in 2016. I will ask her what she did for her accompanied piece and let you know.

marmiteloversunite Wed 11-Oct-17 19:49:19

My DD1 is using the Language of Song book for her vocal and she says that the pieces from there have good piano accompaniment parts. As long as the vocalist doesn't mind singing in another language then that might work.

LilyBolero Wed 11-Oct-17 21:04:08

Do you know what board it is? It's pretty important to tick their boxes of difficulty, and different boards have different criteria.

Theworldisfullofidiots Wed 11-Oct-17 21:05:53

Norwegian dance - piano duet - grieg.
Should be about right level.

Lavabravacava Wed 11-Oct-17 21:06:52

Hungarian dances Brahms? Very popular here.

raspberryrippleicecream Wed 11-Oct-17 21:27:26

I was going to suggest the Grieg Norwegian dance piano duet too. DS did it for our local Festival last year.

raspberryrippleicecream Wed 11-Oct-17 21:34:30

Has the standard changed with the new GCSes though, with regard to your comments of extra marks past Grade 5? DS1 did his in 2014, and there were no extra marks after around Grade 5 standard. He got full marks playing a Grade 5 piece. I'm interested as DS2 is just starting his GCSE.

FiveHoursSleep Thu 12-Oct-17 19:48:58

DD is doing Edexcel, the extra marks might be a new thing.

raspberryrippleicecream Thu 12-Oct-17 20:15:48

DS2 is doing Edexcel too. I think it's still the same, Grade 5 and above is 'more difficult' so carries the same potential marks. Just thinking about your time scales and other commitments there's no point in making life too hard, if a Grade 5 piece played well gives the same marks as a Grade 6 or 7 piece played well

ferrier Thu 12-Oct-17 20:20:14

Richard Rodney Bennett - Suite for Skip and Sadie. Lots of variety in terms of articulation and dynamics and fun to play.

Icouldbeknitting Fri 13-Oct-17 11:16:33

When DS did his GCSE music school wanted him to aim high where I would have had him play a grade five piece and knock it out of the ball park. This is the extract from the assessment criteria for Edexcel, it is still the case that you don't get any more marks for difficulty beyond grade five.

GCSE Performance
The standard level of difficulty at GCSE is Grade 4, so the difficulty levels are:
● up to 3 – less difficult
● Grade 4 – standard
● Grade 5 and above – more difficult.
Students are required to submit one solo and one ensemble performance, made up of a minimum
of one piece each. Each of these performances must be longer than one minute. In addition, the
total performance time across both pieces must be a minimum of four minutes. The difficulty levels
of the solo and ensemble performances are assessed separately.

Malbecfan Sun 15-Oct-17 11:07:10

I'm not teaching Edexcel so cannot comment on exactly what they require in their new spec. However, the board I teach has given a great deal of guidance on the ensemble and in this board, a solo performance is no longer a necessity whereas ensembles most definitely are.

Pianists do not need to play duets; they could accompany a singer or instrumentalist. They need to demonstrate genuine interaction between the parts to gain top marks, so for example just playing an "oom-cha-cha" accompaniment would not give them top marks for difficulty, nor would it demonstrate any interaction.

The posters above who suggest playing a grade 5 piece when in reality their kids are capable of more are spot on. In that situation, the student should be able to put in every performance detail on the page, something the new specifications are keen on. You may also want to double-check the specification online, in particular the mark scheme and any guidance on the ensemble performance.

raspberryrippleicecream Wed 18-Oct-17 20:45:11

I'm just back from parents' evening and was talking to DS2's music teacher. He said that you do get some credit for a higher Grade piece, eg if you got 26 out of 30 for a Grade 8 piece it would be scaled up accordingly. But there are no extra marks available.

tinypop4 Thu 19-Oct-17 11:11:34

What about the dolly suite Faure, the berceuse?
It's quite hard but if she's a grade 7 she should be able to manage it. I've played it with strong students at GCSE and some at AS, back in the AS days!

Broken11Girl Fri 20-Oct-17 01:27:17

Thirding the Grieg Norwegian dance. Or the Coming of the Queen of Sheba, which I did for GCSE back in the day and is about g5. I'd definitely go with something at g5 played really well, over g7 played adequately - as there are no extra marks. Why create more work?

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