Jonny Broom’s Rounds for Savvy Singers
Composed by Jonny Broom, arranged by David Evan Thomas
Published by SMP Press
Jonny Broom’s Rounds for Savvy Singers collects rounds written over several decades, from celebration to celebration. Rounds are meant to be sung around the table, around the piano, or as one text puts it: “in the church with the steeple, in the park with all the people.”
The first round (or canon) is commonly acknowleged to be “Sumer is acumen in,” from the thirteenth century. By the sixteenth century, rounds were being collected, published and sung by singing societies. Some rounds only reveal their meaning when all parts are sung together. These are called “catches.” While some historical rounds are R- or even X-rated, all of Jonny’s rounds are suitable for a general audience.
To sing a round, familiarize yourself with the musical line by singing it in unison as many times as necessary. When ready, circled arabic numerals indicate where each voice enters.
How should a round end? Some like to sing the line an agreed number of times, with one voice dropping out after another. Others prefer a decisive ending. Here, a fermata sign indicates the final note, but only the final note. Ignore the fermata until the end.
Rounds are by nature communal, momentary, rough and ready. Even if you are a savvy singer, there is no perfect performance of a round. There is only generosity and expression. Have fun!
I. Gratias (a3) Thanksgiving
II. Give Thanks (a3) Thanksgiving
III. Happy Are We (Catch a3) Thanksgiving
IV. This House is a Haven (a4) Housewarming
V. A Sunbeam to Warm You (a4) Farewell
VI. Come Back, Dear Friend (a3) Farewell
VII. Merry Sounds for a New Year (a7) New Year
VIII. Slava! (a4) Birthday
IX. Happy Pair (a4) Anniversary
In Praise of…
X. The Apple Round (a3)
XI. Favorite Things (a4)
XII. Love and Joy (a2)
XIII. Sing High (a4)
For Every Day
XIV. A Savory Blessing (a5)
XV. Best Practice (a3)
XVI. All You Can (a4)
XVII. Go in Peace (Diminution canon a3)
More by that scamp, Jonny Broom here.