Now the topics of the authentic sea chanties I researched were definitely not appropriate for use with Elementary School Children. So I endeavored to come up with a topic that was G-rated and understandable to my young actors. I also learned that the sea chanties could be either in triple meter or duple meter. I elected to have the boys sing about sailing over the briny sea in 6/8 time. In the story, the ship is setting sail from England about 1600 to go trading in Morocco. I even tried to use some authentic nautical terminology. (Not easy to enunciate quickly in rhythm.) It is fun to hear the boys continue singing the song going down the hallway after rehearsal. They must enjoy singing it. (They call it their Pirate song.)
The boys have been learning a little dance combination, too. All variations of walking, hopping, and changing directions. So far, so good. The movements seem simple enough that even the less coordinated look good doing it. Soon we will add the costumes and then we'll be in business.
Enjoy this Learning Tracks performance of the Sea Chanty "Over the Briny Sea" from the new Bailey Kids Musical "The Adventures of Dick Whittington."