Having the students play along with any of the audio tracks is optional, but the additional, cinematic sound makes everything sound better, and may inspire them even more!
Given the brevity of the piece, one effective concert suggestion is to have the ensemble first perform the slow version, immediately followed by the more exciting faster version!
With the goal of giving every teacher as many options and tools as possible, there are
four accompaniment track options. The first three are for rehearsal purposes:
1. PULSE only (more interesting sounding than a metronome);
2. DRONE only (helpful with intonation);
3. PULSE plus DRONE.
The fourth track is the most compelling and is for performance, as well as rehearsal. It includes the PULSE, DRONE, and GROOVE.
Each of these accompaniment tracks is offered at four tempi/durations:
120 bpm (1:06), 110 bpm (1:11), 100 bpm (1:18), and 90 bpm (1:27).
The initial performance goal is 120 bpm. There's no reason why musicians cannot also bring this up to the 152 bpm after that, and indeed, performing both versions back-to-back makes for a fun presentation!
The parts are designed to ensure that each of the students will interchangeably get to play the drone, play the moving line part, and singspiel the numbers of the time signatures. The percussionists play and singspiel simultaneously throughout the piece.
The singspiel may be vocalized as either a purely spoken number, or sung at the pitch indicated by the crosshead note, in any comfortable register. By the final 1/4 bars, musicians are invited to shout!
Each wind part contains an indication reminding wind students to raise their instrument up
to their lips during their final measure of singspiel, in order to make a rhythmically smooth transition and quickly prepare their embouchure for sounding the first played note of the next bar. At the faster tempi, should students have any difficulty with this, it's fine if they don't vocalize the final number of the bar, thus allowing more preparation time. The percussionists will always be vocalizing the meter count.
Only one number between 1 and 9 in English has two syllables! It's psychologically easy for a student to slip into thinking of "seven" as two quarter notes, even though the music takes advantage of the word to use it as two eighth notes. Teachers may opt to have their students do as professional players sometimes do, especially at faster tempi: tell the musicians to say "set" instead of "seven".
Interestingly, we pronounce the word "set", but it would really be spelled "sept", short for the Latin word for seven, "septum". This might raise fun questions about the month of September, inviting an explanation as to why the ninth month of the year is named after "seven". Supplemental teaching materials are available with COUNT TO TEN that delve into a variety of numeric and chronological topics, including the history of the modern-day Gregorian calendar and its predecessor, the Julian, or Roman calendar.