KS2 Music: Shakespeare on Trial! - Song 5: 'Blood and Guts and Gore'

Notes for ‘Blood and Guts and Gore’

Another song in mock-Tudoresque style (a bit like ‘Greensleeves’ or ‘Packington’s Pound’) with a fun contrast between ‘sweetness’ of voice...and the gory subject matter! Especially in the choruses, which are to be sung ‘with jolly glee’.

The verses mainly use downward motion, with a slightly sad, ‘modal’ quality, whereas the choruses are generally bright, light and bouncy, with most phrases rising upwards. This contrast was typical of a lot of Elizabethan music.

To exaggerate the theatrical effect, some of the bloodthirsty words can be over-enunciated, with syllables split up - eg ‘ni-ice’ in Verse 1, ‘murder’ in Verse 2, ‘Three’ in Verse 3.

As with ‘Going to the Play’, the backing arrangement features sever-al Tudor instruments from the ‘stage-band’ (recorders, shawm, crumhorn, lute, harp, tabor-drum, tambourine, etc), which you can copy with modern equivalents (recorders, clarinet, ukuleles / guitar, etc).

Song 5: 'Blood and Guts and Gore' (Vocal). A song contrasting gentle music with the gruesome reality of Tudor life. Full vocal.

From your percussionists, tambourine-shakes are great for adding ‘colour’ to some of the blood-thirstier moments and to bring in the chorus - eg at ‘blood that flows...’ in bar 14).

The introductions can be a good moment to feature musical instru-ments visually - eg ‘arpeggios’ or gently-strummed broken-chords from ukuleles and guitar, using chords Dm C Bb Am). Even if not played ‘for real’ a mockband can mime actions for playing lute, recorders and tambourine theatrically.

After Verse 3, there is a double chorus: everyone needs to be ready to jump in quickly second time around, then a 2-bar rest before repeating the final line.

Song 5: 'Blood and Guts and Gore' (Backing). A song contrasting gentle music with the gruesome reality of Tudor life. Backing track.

Resources

Sheet music, lyrics and notes for each of the songs
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Shakespeare on Trial! - playscript
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Shakespeare on Trial! - playscript
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Audio cues and sound effects
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More from this series

Song 4: 'H, C, T and R!'
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Song 6: 'Supernaturally!'
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Song 7: 'Full Fathom Five'
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