by Brian Harris

Everyone knows that a proper warm up is essential for a successful rehearsal. But you might not always want to use a devoted warm-up book, like my Directional Warm-Ups for Band, just to play a chorale and tune a group.

This simple piece provides almost limitless opportunities for improving your band by helping you establish an orderly and focused method for beginning your rehearsals. I've been using this technique for many years and been quite pleased with the results.

Students will learn to focus on intonation, blend, balance, ensemble precision, phase support, phrasing nuance, listening across the ensemble for similar lines, and watching the conductor. An entire page of step-by-step instruction is included on suggested methods for implementation. Also, the conductor score contains a condensed 4-line score (for your ease when rehearsing) as well as a full score version so you can easily find who is playing a wrong note (if the students don't hear and fix it themselves!).

Easy; Grade 1 

Appropriate for use with 2nd-year players and older.

Sample pages:
Sound files:
$16 U.S. for PDF of full score, parts, and site-license
  • daily warm up use
  • teaching tool for intonation, balance, blend, ensemble precision, watching the conductor
  • use on stage before a performance
  • Easy to rehearse since each part is notated with the specific voice assignment (soprano, alto, tenor, bass); This allows the conductor to rehearse like groups by simply asking for "all players with the alto line" or "tenor line" and so forth.
  • Unison section parts make it easy for students to listen to section blend, balance, and intonation.
  • Use of only 4 voicings encourage students to listen across the band for other sections playing their line (resulting in balance, blend, and intonation throughout the ensemble.
  • Balance, section blend, intonation, ensemble, precise legato articulations
  • Students must constantly watch conductor
  • All phrasing is clearly indicated with a fermata at the end of each phrase. Students must learn to support phrase to cadence point.
D minor (1 flat in concert key signature) 

All parts are well within easy ranges: Flute to C two lines above staff; Clarinet & Trumpet to fourth-line D in staff; Trombone to D above staff; Tuba to low B natural, 2 lines below staff.

Full Instrumentation

You need at least one of each SATB part:

Soprano - Flute, Oboe, Clarinet 1, Alto Sax 1, Trumpet 1, Mallets
Alto - Clarinet 2, Alto Sax 2, Trumpet 2, Horn 1, Trombone 1, Mallets
Tenor - Clarinet 3, Tenor Sax, Trumpet 3, Horn 2, Trombone 2, Mallets
Bass - Bassoon, Bass/Contra Clarinet, Bari Sax, Euphonium, Tuba, Mallets

Part for Mallet Instruments only (due to nature of work). Mallet part is written as a 4-voice score. With two players, one can play the treble staff (2 mallets) and the other the bass staff (2 mallets). Or have one player on each part (using 4 players). Use two players per instrument, etc.

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