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Re: Japanese Pictures - thoughts? concerns?
Your kids will love it and will want to work on it more than most other pieces. Have them do a rough read through and see what happens.
I personally feel it is on the easier side of grade 2 and seems to fit my group better than some of the grade 1 pieces.
I have strong woodwinds but limited numbers in all sections. The blocked melody in lows is appealing as well as the harmonic part similarities. There are exposed sections but not to the point where there are too many parts at once. A lot of opportunities for musicality and it should appeal to the students.