Other original music and arrangements, Piano, Vocal

O Come, O Come Emmanuel

This is my choral (SATB) and piano arrangement of the traditional Advent/Christmas hymn, “O Come, O Come Emmanuel”.

After a piano solo introducing the theme, there are four verses in different modal realizations (v. 1, 3, 5, 7), interspersed with three verses (v. 2, 4, 6) in simplified plainchant. The mood goes from longing, in the first verse, to gloriously triumphant in the final verse setting.

Although somewhat chromatic, this is suitable for most choirs, and short enough to be used during Christian liturgy.

Please contact me for the score.

Animation, Comedy, Film, TV, and other visual media scores, Live recordings, Piano, Strings

None of That – Live (rescore)

Scored for: piano trio (piano, violin, and cello).

This is a very clever animated film short from the Ringling College of Art and Design. All of the “sound effects” are created by the instruments.

My goal was to capture the feel of the Warner Brothers cartoons of the 1950s-1970s, particularly the Road Runner series.

This is a live performance recording, so there is some audience noise.

Note that the video is the property of Ringling School of Art and Design, and is used for purposes of illustrating my film scoring. No copyright infringement is intended. The music is Copyright © 2016 Steven K. Sanford.

Please do not republish this film clip elsewhere on the internet or use without permission.

Live recordings, Other original music and arrangements, Piano, Vocal

The Hawthorn Tree – Live

This was a commission from the Shenandoah University Cantus Singers to portray works by women. The poem is “The Hawthorn Tree” by Willa Cather. It is performed by the Cantus Singers under the direction of Dr. Karen Keating.

The Hawthorn Tree is a poem by Willa Cather (1783-1847), pulitzer-prize winning author and journalist. She is well known for her novels about the Great Plains (e.g., O Pioneers!), but she was born in Gore, Virginia, a few miles west of Winchester. She lived nearby for her first ten years, then moved with her family to Nebraska, where she is a cultural icon. Her birthplace is on Route 50 west of Winchester. There is an historical marker on the highway, although the house itself is gone.

by: Willa Cather

Across the shimmering meadows–
Ah, when he came to me!
In the spring-time,
In the night-time,
In the starlight,
Beneath the hawthorn tree.

Up from the misty marshland
Ah, when he climbed to me!
To my white bower,
To my sweet rest,
To my warm breast,
Beneath the hawthorn tree.

Ask of me what the birds sang,
High in the hawthorn tree;
What the breeze tells,
What the rose smells,
What the stars shine–
Not what he said to me!

“The Hawthorn Tree” is reprinted from “April Twilights” by Willa Cather; published by The Gorham Press, Boston, in 1903.

This setting is modeled on the style of an English madrigal, calling for restraint in dynamics, gentle lyricism, and clear articulation of the text.

(recorded live 10 April 2015; posted 24 September 2017)

Other original music and arrangements, Piano

Ode to Joy Variations

This was a quick project to write a few piano variations on the “Ode to Joy” theme from Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. It consists of 4 sections:

  1. “Ode to Joy” Theme
  2. Variation in the Style of Mozart
  3. Variation in the Style of Bach
  4. Variation in the Style of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata

(revised 06 October 2017)