Recently, composer Kyle Pederson led a session devoted to works by other Minnesota composers, several of them commissions. He submitted this summary:

Six new pieces were featured in the recent Minnesota Composer Reading Session at ACDA-MN Summer Dialogue in August. The pieces represent a variety of genres and voicings…something for everyone here!

Love is Welcome Here
, by Catherine Dalton

SATB, SSAA, Solo Voice; a cappella, or with lead sheet and optional instruments

Description: An uplifting melody and text about committing to creating spaces of vulnerability and compassion. The piece features a unique (and impactful) spoken word section in the middle crafted by Twin Cities spoken word artist, Joe Davis. Ideal for both school or church choirs. Commissioned by Osseo Chamber Singers.

Link to order/info:

When We Sing
, by Linda Kachelmeier

SATB with piano and optional violin and cello

Description: A heartfelt piece that expresses the intimacy of choral singing that’s special to so many of us, with text by Kate Tucker. Accessible harmonies, a soaring melodic refrain, and satisfying moments of unison. The optional violin and cello parts add a lovely flowing texture to the more rhythmic piano accompaniment. Ideal for both school and church choirs. Composed for the Parkview United Church of Christ in White Bear Lake, MN. Link to order/info:

It Came Upon A Midnight Clear
, arr. By Rene Clausen

SATB divisi with piano accompaniment

Description: A new, original setting of the beloved Edmund Sears text. This new setting encourages gentleness of spirit, warmth of tone, and a touch of wistfulness.

Composed for the Great River Chorale.

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Leaning on the Everlasting Arms
, arr. by David Cherwien

SAB with piano

Description: A gospel-style treatment of this great American classic hymn. Very accessible vocal lines and a rockin’ piano accompaniment. Immediately engaging.

Composed for the National Lutheran Choir.

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Thanks We Sing To Thee
, arr. by Nancy Grundahl

SATB with piano accompaniment

Description: A lovely, accessible arrangement of the classic Simple Gifts melody. Ralph Waldo Emerson’s text offers a hymn of thanks for daily blessings.

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She Does Not Let Go
, by Timothy C Takach

2 part treble voices with piano accompaniment

This delightful song captures the delicate essence of Mexican poet Manuel Iris’ text. Alternating between lovely unison singing and call and response partner lines, the two treble parts are very accessible for younger voices, and can be gorgeously sung by older treble singers. The text invites singer and listener to offer support in times of struggle and act with care and empathy. Added bonus: this piece can largely be taught using diatonic solfege. Commissioned by North Dakota ACDA.

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