February 7, 2011

See below the post and audio link from Composer's Datebook for today featuring Howard Hanson's work for wind band, Laude.

Audio Link for Composer's Datebook: 2/7/2011

Howard Hanson's Laude

On today's date in 1975, Laude, a new work for symphonic winds by American composer Howard Hanson received its premiere performance in Berkeley, California, by the California State University Long Beach...

December 14, 2010

Today on Composers Datebook, you can read about Messiaen's Oiseaux Exotiques, which will be performed by UMWO on our April 1 concert. The text is below and you can get audio of today's broadcast here. More information on Birds can be found elsewhere on this blog.

Messiaen and Respighi: For the Birds

The song of birds has fascinated composers for centuries, and imitations of especially me...

October 26, 2010

Grainger's Colonial Song certainly unique when considered alongside many of Grainger's works. The piece began as a piano solo for his mother, but Grainger arranged into several different versions. A listing of the orchestrations is below.

-2 voices, harp, orchestra

-Military band

-Violin, cello, piano

-Theater orchestra

-Small orchestra

Also of note is that the melody is not a folk melody, b...

October 22, 2010

Written for the moving of Carl Maria von Weber's body from London back to Germany. The piece was composed for a large wind band and uses themes from "Euryanthe" as the basis for melodic material. The piece was originally edited by Erik Leidzen under the title Trauersinfonie, but a new edition by John Boyd and Michael Votta been recently published under the title Trauermusik. Below you...

October 10, 2010

Charles Ives is a composer that has not been discussed on this blog as of yet. Although Ives is not a composer that we generally consider a "band" composer, many of his works for winds are quite excellent. His "Country Band March" contains many compositional techniques that are considered quintessentially "Ives", especially his wit and irony. Program notes from the printed score are be...

October 3, 2010

Written for a brass ensemble, Percy Grainger's Duke of Marlborough Fanfare is a shorter work for winds that, in many ways, is an underperformed and under appreciated piece for the medium. Program notes are below, as well as a recording.

Percy Grainger's Duke of Marlborough Fanfare takes its inspiration from an 18th-century broadside ballad, probably written relatively close to the event...

October 2, 2010

Today's post will feature more band music from Warren Benson as we explore The Leaves Are Falling. Benson began composition of the piece on November 22, 1963 the date of the assassination of John F. Kennedy and the work uses the Martin Luther hymn tune Ein' feste Burg (A Mighty Fortress). The piece is extremely important in the history of band music and was considered exceptionally imp...

October 1, 2010

Composers Datebook Audio 10/1/2010

"Flagg-waving" in Colonial Boston?

On today's date in 1768, two regiments of British redcoats marched into Colonial Boston with colors flying -- and bayonets fixed -- accompanied by martial music provided by their regimental wind band. It was that city's introduction to the exotic sound of massed oboes, bassoons, and French horns.

One Bostonian who was v...

August 31, 2010

Below you can find today's Composers Datebook, discussing Kurt Weill's Three-Penny Opera.

Composers Datebook audio

Weill's Three-penny Opera in Berlin

On today's date in 1928, Kurt Weill's Three-Penny Opera debuted at the Theater am Schiffbauerdamm, a small, but opulent Baroque-style theater in Berlin. It must have seemed a rather ironic setting for Kurt Weill's "opera for beggars," whose...

August 30, 2010

Below is Composers Datebook which features the wind band icon John Philip Sousa. You can find the audio clip and the text below. Enjoy!

Composers Datebook audio (8/30/10)

Sousa gets stiffed in Minneapolis

It was on this day in 1929 that a new march by John Philip Sousa was played for the first -- and last -- time until almost 60 years later. The Foshay Tower Washington Memorial March was...

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