1072 W. 15th St. #3
San Pedro, CA 90731
Phone: (310) 548-7260
apetker@gmail.com
Shirley W. McRae

Shirley W. McRae is Professor Emerita at the Rudy E. Scheidt School of Music, The University of Memphis, Memphis, Tennessee, where she taught for 25 years and served as coordinator of music education for seven years. At the University, she taught courses in aural theory, children's choirs, hymnology, choral conducting, and music education. Prior to her appointment to the University faculty, she was an elementary school music specialist.

Ms. McRae is a widely known specialist in Orff Schulwerk, an innovative approach to teaching music to children, and has taught certification courses at the University of Wyoming, Central Connecticut State University, Samford University, the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, University of Central Florida, and the University of Memphis. She also presents numerous in-service workshops in cities in the United States and Canada and has presented sessions at national conferences of the American Orff-Schulwerk Association and at state and regional MENC meetings. She has long been active in adult and children's choirs, serving as children's choir director at Evergreen Presbyterian Church in Memphis from 1988-93, and is an active clinician in choir festivals and regional summer seminars (Lake Junaluska and Montreat, in North Carolina). She was a member of the editorial board of The Chorister.

Ms. McRae has published extensively, with articles in church and music education journals. Also a composer and arranger, she has published nine books of folk and original songs arranged for treble voices and Orff instruments. Two of these collections, Celebrate and Let Us Praise God (Augsburg Fortress), are intended for children's church choirs. Shared Harmony, published in 2001, presents folk and original materials for early experiences in part singing. She has secular and sacred mixed choral works published by G.I.A., Broude Brothers, Abingdon, Neil A. Kjos, Plymouth (now Colla Voce), Alliance, Pavane, Hal Leonard, Choristers Guild, and Mark Foster. Four compositions have won awards in contests sponsored by Ithaca College and the Denver Women's Chorus. She is a contributing composer to the United Methodist Hymnal Supplement (I and II), Rejoice, Give Thanks and Sing (SAB anthems) and was the featured author and composer in the May 1991 and September 1995 editions of Church Music Workshop (Abingdon Press).

A major work, Directing the Children's Choir: A Comprehensive Resource, was published in 1991 by Schirmer Books and covers all aspects of the choir program, establishing a philosophical base as well as providing many practical ideas. It is now undergoing extensive revision. A recorder group method book, Tutoring Tooters , was released in September 1990, by Memphis Musicraft. Published in 1995 by Abingdon Press is a collection of descants to 45 hymn tunes, High Praise. A commissioned hymn tune appears in the 1997 Supplement To the Hymnal 1982 of the Episcopal church.

Five of her compositions have been commercially recorded on the Pro Organo, Penguin Digital, and Mark Custom labels. One of these works was chosen by National Public Radio for the program, "Pipe Dreams," aired in April and December 1992. Choral pieces have been performed in New York's Alice Tully Hall (1990) and Carnegie Hall (1994). She was the 1991 recipient of the Dean's Faculty Creative Achievement Award at the University of Memphis and has received ASCAP awards each year since 1993 for her compositions. "The Song Inside of Me," commissioned for the Tennessee Bicentennial, 1996, was declared by Resolution 221 of the State Legislature the official state Bicentennial song. In 2000 she was nominee for Premier Music Teacher of the Year by the Memphis Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.

A native of Memphis, Ms. McRae received her Bachelor's degree in piano performance from Texas Woman's University, where she was elected to Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities. She received her M.A. and M. Ed. degrees and four levels of Orff certification from the University of Memphis. She is a member of Sigma Alpha Iota; American Orff-Schulwerk Association; Music Educators National Conference; Pi Kappa Lambda; American Guild of Organists; Choristers Guild; American Choral Directors Association; and ASCAP. She was national co-chair of the 2005 Conference of the American Orff-Schulwerk Association in Birmingham.

 

 [Octavo]
 

Octavo

 
Black Sheep, Black Sheep
 

 Black Sheep, Black Sheep 
Composer: South Carolina Folk Song  Arranger: Shirley McRae 

Voicing: 3-PART 
Season: Folk Song  Released: March 2003 
   SShirley McRae is a well-established arranger and clinician, especially with children's voices. This tender folk song, lamented by slave mother's about their forsaken children, has been selected for the Judith Herrington choral series. An excellent concert or festival work, it was commissioned by the Cincinnati Children's Choir.
 

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  P1213 - 3-PART  [buy now]
$2.35

 
Blow The Wind Southerly
 

 Blow The Wind Southerly 
Arranger: Shirley McRae 

Voicing: 2-PART  Released: January 2010  Difficulty: Easy
Sample Sound File Listen
   Shirley McRae is best known for the exquisite way she arranges folk songs - they capture the nationality of their origin so perfectly. This gentle, English folk song expresses the longing of separated lovers. Designed for elementary and middle school choirs.
 

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  P1374 - 2-PART  [buy now]
$2.10

 
Haida
 

 Haida 
Composer: Chassidic Round  Arranger: Shirley W. McRae 

Voicing: 3-PART 
Season: General  Released: March 2002 
   Published composer, Shirley McRae, has created an energetic arrangement of the Chassidic Round ''Haida.'' Rounds are always fun to sing and easy to learn, but the addition of clarinet or saxophone and tambourine make this setting especially enjoyable. This selection was selected for the Judith Herrington Choral Series.
 

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  P1201 - 3-PART  [buy now]
$2.35

 
Little Fox
 

 Little Fox 
Composer: English Folk Song  Arranger: SHirley W. McRae 

Voicing: 2-PART 
Season: Folk Song  Released: January 2007 
Sample Sound File Listen
   Shirley McRae is well known for her excellent arrangements of folk songs for young voices and this new setting continues her forward trend. With a bouncing piano part enhanced by a percussive triangle, along with a dancing clarinet line, the story of the ''little fox'' is narrated in song. The rhymes are fun and the fable enchanting. Easy
 

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  P1310 - 2-PART  [buy now]
$2.35

 
Sakura
 

 Sakura 
Composer: Japanese Folk Song  Arranger: Shirley McRae 

Voicing: 2-PART 
Season: Folk Song  Released: February 2004  Difficulty: Easy
Sample Sound File Listen
   Selected for the Judy Herrington Choral Series, this arrangement of the well-known childhood Japanese folk song ''Sakura,'' hits the mark. With a descriptive keyboard part, finger cymbals and flute, the 2-part vocal parts easily express this respected melody. Typical of the series, a pronunciation guide and other musical notes are provided.
 

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  P1234 - 2-PART  [buy now]
$2.35

 
Shady Grove
 

 Shady Grove 
Composer: Southern Appalachian Folk Song  Arranger: Shirley W. McRae 

Voicing: 3-PART 
Season: Folk Song  Released: March 2003 
Sample Sound File Listen
   It will be hard to keep your feet still when this number starts. Besides the dancing piano accompaniment, the use of ad lib spoons makes it even more fun. Veteran writer, Shirley McRae, was commissioned to write this arrangement by the Cache Children's Choir in Logan Utah. This is a winner!
 

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  P1227 - 3-PART  [buy now]
$2.35

 
Shepherd's Song
 

 Shepherd's Song 
Composer: Inner Mongolian Folk Song  Arranger: Shirley McRae 

Voicing: SA 
Season: General  Released: January 2008  Difficulty: Easy
Sample Sound File Listen
   One of Shirley McRae's greatest gifts is capturing the essence of other cultures in song. This Inner Mongolian Folk Song is no exception. Incorporating a few handbells, a bell tree and an oboe bring an authentic color to the arrangement. Singing about the beauty of nature that surrounds the shepherd, this is a cherished song in Chinese communities.
 

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  P1338 - SA  [buy now]
$2.35

 
The Birch Tree
 

 The Birch Tree 
Composer: Russian Folk Song  Arranger: Shirley W. McRae 

Voicing: 2-PART 
Season: General  Released: January 2009  Difficulty: Easy
Sample Sound File Listen
   The birch tree is deeply rooted in the soil, known in Russian folklore as ''Moist Mother Earth.'' The tree embodies everything that is graceful, tenderly sad, lost, but ultimately recovered and remembered. As always with Shirley McRae, she captures the essence of the culture in her well-crafted writing. Singing this piece somehow brings a picture of Russian birch trees into our midst. For young voices.
 

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  P1361 - 2-PART  [buy now]
$2.10

 
The Moon Barque
 

 The Moon Barque  
Composer: Shirley McRae  Author/Lyricist: Wang Seng-Ju, 6th Century 

Voicing: SATB  Released: January 2012  Difficulty: Medium
Sample Sound File Listen
   Great choral music transports you into the story of the text and the emotion of the song. From a 6th century Chinese poem recalling the separation from their loved ones caused by a sailor's life, Shirley McRae successfully carries us. Recommended for high school choirs, this piece is a musical escape into an age-old longing for those we love.
 

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  P1418 - SATB  [buy now]
$2.10

 
Watsha
 

 Watsha 
Composer: Folk Song from Lesotho  Arranger: Shirely W. McRae 

Voicing: 4-PART 
Season: Folk Song  Released: January 2005 
Sample Sound File Listen
   Shirley McRae is known for your educational writing and wonderful choral publications. This folk song from Lesotho is a call and response piece for 4 part choir (any voicing) and percussion. Her clever implementation of ostinato introduces young singers to polyrhythms. Watsha, meaning to burn (as in clearing brushy areas) is an energetic song that fit any age and any school or community choir program.
 

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  P1268 - 4-PART  [buy now]
$1.80

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