I am a high school student and there is this Classical Music festival my school attends each year. I have been asked to conduct the school ensemble from now on till I graduate, because I simply am the most knowledgeable, talented and motivated and probably because my father is a conductor too.
The thing is, I get to choose what we are going to play. I know this sounds ridiculous, but we only have a cellist, lots of violinists, a pianist, an oboist, a flutist and a trombonist common with a classical orchestra. For this small ensemble, I have been thinking of orchestrating Chopin's Etude Op. 25 No. 7 in C# minor, as as the title suggests the melody really suits the sound of the cello and the arrangement is quite straightforward. It will be rather difficult for the inexperienced cellist though. For the second piece, I have been thinking of arranging a Rachmaninoff Medley, with the famous melodies from C# minor prelude, Symphonic Dances, 2nd Concerto, 2nd Symphony and Vocalise.
So, what would you suggest for this ensemble to play? It can be a piano piece that is easily arrangeable or a work that is easy and small enough for this orchestra. Maximum duration is about 10 minutes for a single piece. Please keep in mind that the violinists play quite poorly and their intonation sucks. What I want is a piece with a charming melody with a simple accompaniment that will sound good when played by this orchestra and that will satisfy the audience, with preserving the seriousness. Also keep in mind that that I'm no Ravel or Respighi.
Thank you all!