The website of James Humberstone

Music for middle school aged children

Since the concept of middle school is not international, some of the music in this section is also represented in the primary (elementary) and high school sections. Alternatively it may contain material for children of different ages.

The Speaking Piano (2012). Piano.

An outreach project for the Goulburn Regional Conservatorium of Music, premiered by Michael Kieran Harvey. Includes music for beginner and intermediate piano players, a classroom (pitched and unpitched percussion) arrangement, and concert music for a professional (as premiered by Harvey - listen below). Associated resources include an illustrated story book, an eBook for iPad and a webapp.

The Speaking Piano has its own website - click here to visit it. The video below the recordings is an introduction to the story the project is based on.

Symphony of the Child (2009). Orchestra, extended Percussion, SATB Choir.

Note: each movement of the Symphony is for different aged children. The first movement was designed for pre-school and primary school children with senior orchestra and professional trumpeter. The singing and percussion parts for primary children are very simple. The second movement is more suitable to middle school children (late primary to early secondary in many countries), again with senior orchestra, and the fourth movement has singing parts for younger children.

Commissioned by International Grammar School, Sydney.

  Download a sample of the score of the second movement, and listen to an excerpt also from the second movement, below.

Daedalus and Icarus (revision – 2009). Text by John Hughes. Four part children’s Choir, solo Violin, String Quartet, Piano.

The revision was premiered by MLC School under James Humberstone at Angel Placea and again in 2011 at the International School of Beijing.

  Download a sample of the score, and listen to the complete Angel Place performance by MLC School below.

Nocturna’s Stars (2008). Four part children’s Choir, Harp, String Quartet.

Commissioned and premiered by MLC School at the Sydney Opera House under Anna Humberstone.

  Download a sample of the score, and watch the premiere performance below.

Today is Tomorrow Beginning (revision – 2006). Soprano and Alto voices, Orff ensemble, Orchestra.

The revision was premiered by MLC School at the Sydney Town Hall.

  Download a sample of the score, and listen to the complete recording below.

Simple Suite for Strings (1999). String Orchestra.

A very simple suite for beginner string ensembles which will introduce a few new pitches outside D major.

Much of James' piano music is simple enough for middle school children to play. See the Solo section under Concert Music for scores and recordings.

Solo Solo Solo