ADASKIN, MURRAY

NIGHT IS NO LONGER SUMMER SOFT

Musical Characteristics: This composition is based on interlocking melodic and rhythmic motives which are developed and extended in a variety of ways. There are no conventional long melodic lines, but rather short motives. There are frequent leaps, including many fourths, fifths, and octaves (e.g., the opening motive for Piccolo and Flutes), and there is also frequent chromatic motion (e.g., the opening motive for Baritone and Euphonium). The tempo is slow (quarter note = 50). Metre is predominantly 4/4, with some changes to 3/4. The composer indicates that the character of the piece is "somber and gloomy." The harmonic idiom is tonal but with a good deal of chromaticism and dissonance. Adaskin uses a variety of textures, superimposing several different melodic and rhythmic patterns, involving various combinations of instrumental colours. There are quite frequent changes in dynamics, ranging from p to ff. There are some muted passages for Trumpets (straight and cup mutes).

Technical Challenges: Chromatic figures present challenges for dexterity and intonation. Dissonant passages and high register woodwind figures must be carefully tuned. Large leaps require well developed embouchure. Articulation must be well controlled. Special care is needed on slurs over a wide range and on sfz notes. Careful counting is needed so that interlocking rhythmic patterns fit precisely together. A sense of ensemble fluency is needed so that patterns flow into one another instead of sounding disjointed and choppy.

Pedagogical Value: This piece is useful for developing dexterity, intonation, embouchure control, sectional independence, and rhythmic precision. It is also an interesting study in motivic organization and development.

 

ANDERSON-WUENSCH, JEAN

CELEBRATION I

Musical Characteristics: This piece has an A B A' B' formal structure. The A and A' sections feature fanfare-type figures on repeated pitches and a lively syncopated theme. The thematic material is developed more extensively in the A section than in the A' sectlon. The A and A' sections move between half note = 96 and half note = 76, mainly in 2/2 metre, but with occasional 3/2 bars. The B and B' sections feature a stately chorale-type theme moving in half and whole notes, "Andante," with half note = 76 in 2/2 metre. A "poco a poco crescendo e accelerando" passage with a repeated rhythmic figure leads from section B to section A', and a similar figure leads from section B' to a short coda, "Tempo primo" (half note = 96), which brings the composition to an effective ff conclusion. The harmonic idiom is tonal, but there are frequent modulations, chromatic and modal inflections, secondary and diminished harmonies, some quartal effects, and pedal tones. Various textures are used. Sections B and B' use homophonic textures, whereas sections A and A' use melody and accompaniment textures with some simple counterpoint or interjections in middle and upper woodwind. In the fanfare sections, brass and woodwinds have antiphonal patterns. Effective use is made of the range of colours available in the band. The percussion section has considerable melodic and musical interest. Dynamics range from pp to ff, with some sudden changes.

Technical Challenges: Accidentals, dynamics, and articulation markings must be carefully observed. Eighth note passages at half note = 96 require good dexterity. Players should feel two beats per bar in 2/2 to help maintain the forward momentum. Changes of tempo require careful attention. Fanfare figures must be played with clarity and precision. Timpani pitch changes are very challenging. Good blend of sound is needed in the brass and woodwind choirs in sections B and B'. Antiphonal brass and woodwind passages must be fluently played.

Pedagogical Value: This is an accessible piece which provides opportunities to develop dexterity, rhythmic precision, blend of sound, and control of dynamics. The changes of tempo and style make it a valuable study in contrasts. The andante sections are particularly useful for developing a full, warm tone.

 

BAUER, ROBERT

CONCERTO FOR EUPHONIUM AND BAND

Musical Characteristics: A one-movement work featuring contrasts between long held notes and faster more rhythmic passages with repeated sixteenth note patterns, and also featuring contrasts between Euphonium solos and full band sections. Atonal, with frequent dissonance. Use of tone clusters contrasting with unisons and octaves. Linear rather than chordal movement. Little melodic interest except in the solo line, where there is considerable angular melodic movement. Conventional rhythmic notation is not used, although some short rhythmic patterns are indicated. Duration is specified in seconds. There is an improvised section for Euphonium. There are many changes of texture with exposed lines for all instruments. Extensive soli passages. Considerable variety of timbre with many contemporary wind playing techniques (e.g., blowing air in waves, key rattling, vibrato effects, and use of mutes). Wide dynamic range (pp to fff) and frequent use of cresc. and dim. effects.

Technical Challenges: There are some difficult ranges for Flute, Clarinet I, Trumpet, and solo Euphonium. One improvisatory section requires the soloist to move from "as high as possible" to "as low as possible." Solo Euphonium has some awkward finger movement, with some fast chromatic passages in the upper and middle registers and some rapid movement over a large range of the instrument. Dissonant tone clusters must be carefully tuned. Players must watch the conductor carefully for cues to begin and end long held notes and repeated patterns of notes.

Pedagogical Value: An interesting study in contemporary playing and compositional techniques. Challenging for a talented Euphonium soloist. Useful for developing ensemble and listening skills.

 

BECKWITH, JOHN

ELASTIC BAND STUDIES

Musical Characteristics: Beckwith indicates that the title is taken from an anecdote about Sir Thomas Beecham who purportedly remarked to a soprano soloist "whose wayward rhythmic sense made her difficult to follow: 'Madam, this is a symphonic orchestra-not an elastic band!"' In Beckwith's 4 studies, "time and coordination are treated more 'elastically' than in your average aria by Mozart or Verdi." The studies are designed to introduce a variety of contemporary compositional techniques. Study 1 exploits spatial effects, with several independent musical events taking place simultaneously. 2 groups of players begin at the back of the auditorium, walking to the stage while playing. A third group is on stage. There is a good deal of rhythmic freedom within and between groups, yet coordination is also required. Study 2 features juxtaposition of various short motives played by contrasting instruments. There are 2 short sections involving improvisation on given pitches. Study 3 has no conventional metrical organization. It features free canonic effects as each Clarinet player performs the same notated pitches but with rhythmic and dynamic freedom, with the canonic entries about a second apart. Against this canon there are staccato brass interjections plus longer sustained pitches with carefully specified dynamic variations, played by 2 groups of contrasting instruments. Study 4 explores various groupings of repeated eighth notes, with a steady eighth note pulse but no conventional metrical notation. 2 eighth notes from one instrument or group of instruments alternate with a longer group of eighths (varying from 3 to 7 notes per group), played by another instrument or group of instruments. There are 6 sections, each with different instrumentation. Section 6 is scored for the full ensemble, bringing the composition to an exciting climax. This composition uses a wide dynamic range (ppp to fff, with numerous dynamic changes, some abrupt, others subtle. Variations in texture, dynamics, and instrumental tone colour play an important role in the shape and design of the studies.

Technical Challenges: Individual confidence, independence, and sensitive listening are required to achieve the necessary coordination between instruments and groups of instruments. Confidence and alertness are especially important where individual players are to assume leadership roles, giving signals to other players. In Study 1, members of the left group must count carefully when metres change (2/4, 5/4, 7/4, 3/4), and must not become confused by the independent rhythmic movement of the other groups. In Study 2, rhythmic subdivisions must be accurate. Studies 3 and 4, which are written without conventional metres, present ensemble challenges. The interlocking eighth note groupings in Study 4 are demanding for performers and conductor. The association of words with the various rhythmic groupings in this study may be useful in working toward the required rhythmic precision. Balance requires careful attention. Dynamics must be carefully observed and well controlled. Intonation presents challenges, given the lack of conventional harmonic and melodic movement, especially when there are extreme dynamics and extended ranges.

Pedagogical Value: These studies provide a valuable opportunity for students to explore contemporary sounds. Confident and sensitive leadership from the conductor is essential in guiding the players in their explorations. These studies are excellent for ensemble, rhythmic, and aural development.

 

BELL, ALLAN

FROM CHAOS TO THE BIRTH OF A DANCING STAR

Musical Characteristics: Interesting sounds and textures are used to create a dramatically effective composition. The piece is programmatic in that it follows the suggestion of the title, moving from the chaos of the opening ff dissonant chords and violent percussive sounds and the confusion of many repeated rhythmic figures to a tranquil conclusion. Following the chaotic opening, a short melodic motive is introduced by stopped Horn and is developed by various instruments in the ensemble, moving from one instrument or section to another. The style becomes more traditional with rich harmonies which are reminiscent of contemporary film scores. There is a good deal of rhythmic interest and variety in this piece. The opening section is in 4/4, but pauses disrupt the rhythmic flow. A "senza misura" section follows, in which the conductor cues instruments which enter playing repeated rhythmic figures. As the theme develops, effective use is made of syncopations and tied notes which create a jazz feel. There are frequent changes of metre (4/4, 5/8, 6/8, 2/4, C, 12/8), with the eighth note pulse remaining constant. Texture is very dense in the opening chaotic section, and remains fairly thick although there are quite frequent changes of instrumentation as the theme is developed. There is considerable variety of timbre, with extensive use made of percussion. Special effects (e.g., key clicks, use of mutes, and various percussion dampening and choking effects) and a wide dynamic range contribute to the dramatic quality of this composition.

Technical Challenges: This is a challenging piece with some difficult ranges for Flutes, Clarinets, and Trumpets, some tricky rhythms, and jagged melodic movement. Off-beat entries, accented off-beats, and changes of style and articulation require care and precision. A mature percussion section is needed, with players capable of independent performance. Percussion stick changes and movement between instruments require careful organization. Strong section leaders are needed, with a confident player on solo Horn. Players must become familiar with the non-standard notation and the dissonant sounds, and must become confident in the "senza misura" section and in the sections where metres change.

Pedagogical Value: This piece introduces contemporary sounds and compositional approaches in an approachable musical context. It can provide an excellent opportunity to introduce students to contemporary compositional and performance techniques (e.g., atonality, tone clusters, changing metres, irregular metric patterns, unmetred bars, unusual timbres). It can also be useful for developing rhythmic independence and for developing fluency in syncopated rhythms and precision in hocket-type patterns. Presents technical and musical challenges to a senior level band. Provides exciting material for a capable percussion section - especially for the mallet players who have important melodic as well as rhythmic material.

 

CALVERT, MORLEY

INTRODUCTION AND SCHERZO

Musical Characteristics: Two contrasting movements. "Introduction" is slow with quarter note = 54 in 3/4 metre. After two full band chords, the remainder of the movement features woodwinds creating a somewhat sombre mood with soft slurred eighth notes. Euphonium and Tuba provide a soft sustained B-flat pedal. "Scherzo" is allegro, still in 3/4, with dotted half note = 84. The opening section of the Scherzo is based on melodic and rhythmic fragments derived from the Introduction and punctuated by accented quarter note chords. At letter D a contrasting theme is introduced. It is cantabile in nature with rich harmonies. Melodic fragments from the opening section continue to appear. A "D.S." leads back to bar 20 of the opening section of the Scherzo and continues through the change of key signature and the introduction of the cantabile theme to letter E. A sparsely scored coda concludes the movement. There is considerable use of repetition in this movement (e.g., the recurrence of the opening bars at letter G of the coda). The harmony of the composition is largely tonal, and features changes between major and minor tonalities. The composition begins and ends in B-flat minor, but it moves through other tonal centres (e.g., F+). There is heavy use of pedal tones and chromaticism, and some use of dissonance. Textures vary considerably. There is a good deal of sectional independence. Sectional soli, duets, trios, and quartets are featured. Use of full band is infrequent. Silence is used effectively. Dynamic range is from pp to ff. Muted Trumpets and stopped notes on Horns add to the variety of timbre.

Technical Challenges: The tempo of the Scherzo requires that it be conducted in one, and therefore the players must have a strong sense of rhythmic subdivision. The moving eighth notes must be clear, fluent, and rhythmically precise. There are some awkward break crossings for woodwinds. Range is particularly demanding for Flutes I and II. The disjunct melody beginning at letter C features some awkward, hard-to-hear intervals for Piccolo, Flutes, Clarinet I, and Alto Sax I. The Euphonium line is important and must be played with confidence, especially in the soli passages after letter D. Horns must work on developing secure intonation, especially where they play in four-part harmony. Because the musical phrases are often fragmented and passed among different voices, the playing must be fluent so that there is continuity of musical line. Sensitive listening and adjusting are needed so that melodic lines are not overbalanced by accompanying voices, and so that good blend is achieved as textures and timbres change. The ensemble must be able to produce staccato with good tone quality and to use dynamics expressively.

Pedagogical Value: This composition is valuable for the technical and musical development of a senior level band. It provides opportunities for players to develop tone, dexterity, and tuning, and to work on balance, blend, phrasing, and rhythm.

 

CHREPTYK, DENNIS

POEM AND PROPHECY

Musical Characteristics: Two movements. The first, "Poem," is in three main sections. Section one begins with quarter note = 92. Section two, beginning in bar 23, is slower (meno mosso). Section three (beginning in bar 32) returns to "Tempo 1." There are frequent metre changes (2/4, 4/4, 5/4, 3/4, 6/8), sometimes changing every bar (e.g., bars 50-55). A four-bar introduction features ascending scale motives with some tricky rhythms. The opening four bars are repeated almost exactly in bars 32-35 as the introduction to the third section. Melodies move mainly by step or small leap. Textures vary a good deal. There is considerable independence of voices, and some use of solo instruments. There is some effective pairing of voices on melodic lines, and overlapping of voices. Rhythmic motion increases in section three (e.g., repeated woodwind sixteenth note descending scalar motives and repeated woodwind triplet motives over sustained brass with ties over the barline). Dynamics range from p to ff, with frequent dynamic changes, including some fp and sfz effects. Some use of muted Trumpet. The second movement, "Prophecy," begins with a four-bar brass passage, answered by the woodwinds, then full band texture with development of these rhythmic motives. Rhythms increase in complexity (including thirty-second note runs) through bar 27, then thinner textures and some slower rhythmic motion provide contrast. There are some exposed solos, some repeated ostinato effects, and thicker textures as the movement builds to a final fff full band chord. Tempo is quarter note = 54, with an accel. and some rit. markings. There are some changes of metre ( 2/4, 3/4 and 4/4) and some large melodic leaps. Frequent repetition of melodic and rhythmic motives. Dynamic range is from pp to fff. Muted Trumpets, Horns, and Trombones are used. In both movements, there is frequent use of chromaticism and dissonance. There is some use of polychords (e.g., the final chord is C E G against A-flat C E-flat).

Technical Challenges: There is a good deal of rhythmic complexity which requires individual work, then careful ensemble drill. Woodwinds have frequent fast runs involving some difficult fingerings, frequent use of chromatic fingerings, and some large leaps. There are also some large leaps for brass which require good dexterity. Endurance could be a problem for Trumpets due to an extended section in the upper register at a f level at the end of "Prophecy." Dynamic and articulation markings must be carefully observed. Solo lines must be confident and technically secure. Fluent playing is needed as melodic material is passed from voice to voice. Care is needed with intonation (e.g., when Flute and Clarinet play in unison at extreme dynamic levels, and when Flute doubles muted Trumpet).

Pedagogical Value: This composition presents valuable opportunities to work on ensemble skills (e.g., rhythmic precision, blend and balance of sound, dynamic contrasts, phrasing, intonation, fluency in passing material from one voice to another in the band).

 

COAKLEY, DONALD

PROLOGUE AND DRAMATIC MUSIC FOR WINDS AND

PERCUSSION

Musical Characteristics: This composition features effective contrasts in tempo, style, texture, dynamics, and timbre. A slow prologue (quarter note = 52) is followed by a fast section (quarter note = 132), then an improvisational section, then a concluding fast section. The prologue introduces a number of rhythmic and melodic motives which are developed in the remaining sections of the piece. There are many changes of metre. 2/4, 3/4, 4/4, 5/4, and 6/4 are used in the prologue. 4/4 is used in the opening of the next section, but changes to 2/4, 7/8, 5/8 and 3/4 follow. In some cases metres change every bar. In sharp contrast to the rhythmic precision and changing patterns of accentuation in this section is the rhythmic freedom of the following non-metric improvisational section where duration is indicated in seconds. The concluding fast section again features changing metres (3/4, 2/4, 4/4, 7/8, 5/8, 3/8) with some metrically free improvisational gestures beginning in bar 241. Coakley uses a wide variety of textures, from thin, transparent textures, to brass and woodwind choirs, to full ensemble, densely scored. Changes of dynamics and timbre contribute to the dramatic character of this piece. The dynamic range is wide (ppp to fff). Effective use is made of tuned and untuned percussion. Various harmonic techniques are used (e.g., primitive sounding modal sonorities in ostinato-style passages; chromaticism; quartal sonorities; tonal and atonal patterns; mixed modalities).

Technical Challenges: Syncopations, changing metres, and irregular patterns of accentuation require careful counting. Special care is needed on entrances after rests. The improvisational passages require a good deal of individual independence and confidence. The upper woodwinds have some high ranges and dexterity demands. The improvisational passage at bar 121 requires that staccato sixteenths be played using random patterns, avoiding major or minor triads or sevenths. The improvisational passage beginning in bar 241 is to be played as fast as possible, with each performer acting independently. Careful tuning is needed on high register woodwind trills. Extended ostinato-type passages require staggered breathing. Articulation changes must be carefully observed. A very capable percussion section is needed, with at least six players and careful set-up to facilitate changes between instruments. Four Timpani are used with some tricky pitch changes.

Pedagogical Value: An effective piece for a strong senior band. Provides an excellent opportunity to feature and work with the percussion section. A useful study in contrasts. Valuable for developing rhythmic and ensemble skills because of changing metres, rhythmic complexities, and improvisational passages.

 

COAKLEY, DONALD

RITUAL CELEBRATION FOR BAND

Musical Characteristics: Based on medieval melodic material, treated with a variety of compositional techniques (e.g., diminution, use of pedals, motivic development and fragmentation, quasi-ostinato rhythmic accompanying figures, cascading effects as motives pass from one instrument to another up through the band). Quartal and modal harmonies are used. Tempo and style changes add variety. The slow opening ("Ritualistic and deliberate" with quarter note = 80) contrasts with the faster section which begins at bar 36 ("Joyously" with quarter note = 116). A ritard in bar 200 leads to a broader section (quarter note = 92 ) beginning at bar 202, which leads through a ritard back to the opening tempo (quarter note = 80) at bar 220. The final section (beginning in bar 234) returns to quarter note = 116. 2/4 metre is used throughout. Quite frequent ties across the bar line, syncopations. Interesting variety of textures, sometimes linear, sometimes more homophonic. Frequent contrasts between brass and woodwind sections. Melodic material passes from one instrumental line to another, with frequent use of soli lines. Tuned percussion plays an integral melodic role. Wide dynamic range (p to ff). Contrasts between accented, percussive style, and smoother, broader, more sustained style.

Technical Challenges: Requires strong woodwinds because of demanding upper register playing (especially Piccolo, Flutes, E-flat Clarinet, B-flat Clarinets, Alto Saxes, Bassoons). Sixteenth note passages require good dexterity, fluency, and rhythmic precision. Percussion section should include two players comfortable with mallet instruments. Xylophone, Bells and Chimes require fluency and good mallet technique There are some quick changes between instruments in the percussion section. Some long phrases with sustained tones require staggered breathing. Good blend of sound is needed on sectional soli passages. Melodic and accompanying lines must be well balanced. Changes of tempo and style of articulation require careful attention. Clear, precise attacks are needed, especially on off-beat entries and on short motives which pass from one instrument to another. Long pedal tones need to have a sense of direction related to the moving lines in the ensemble. Intonation requires careful work.

Pedagogical Value: Valuable for developing ensemble precision and sensitivity because of the rhythmic challenges and the changing textures which require considerable sectional independence. The modal tonality and quartal sonorities present opportunities to develop aural skills and to work on intonation. The piece provides challenging material for capable percussionists. Interesting for students to analyse how the melodic material is treated in various ways.

 

COAKLEY, DONALD

TOCCATA FESTIVA

Musical Characteristics: A one-movement work featuring development of rhythmic and melodic motives. Effective contrasts in texture and style. Tonal with frequent use of pedal tones and ostinato patterns. Little use of chromaticism. Melodic movement is generally by step and small intervals. Metre is 2/4 throughout, with quarter note = 80, Maestoso. Generally straight-forward rhythms featuring mainly half, quarter, eighth, and sixteenth note values. Some simple syncopations. Dynamic range is from p to ff with frequent use of crescendo markings. Effective use of woodwind and brass timbres. Some use of straight mute for Trumpet and Cornet. Linear rather than chordal writing. Considerable independence between sections of the band, and some independence within sections creating pyramid effects.

Technical Challenges: Predominant finger movement is scalewise, but there are some awkward fingerings for woodwinds. Upper woodwinds have frequent trills. Articulation and dynamic changes must be carefully observed. There are some heavy accents for a prolonged period of time in the upper registers for Cornet and Trumpet, and some accents in the extreme low register for Trombone III. There are frequent and often rapid break crossings in Clarinets I, II, and III, moving upward and downward. There are some extended phrases in the high register in Flute, Piccolo, Clarinet I, Cornet, Trumpet, and Trombone. Precision is needed when voices move homorhythmically. Care is needed on entrances after rests. This piece requires a confident, well disciplined ensemble.

Pedagogical Value: "Toccata Festiva" provides opportunities for the analysis of compositional techniques used to develop melodic and rhythmic motives (e.g., inversion, diminution, augmentation). It is an interesting study in repetition and contrast. It is useful for developing precision in rhythm and articulation.

 

CRAWLEY, CLIFFORD

PROCLAMATION

Musical Characteristics: This is a one-movement composition which features a good deal of repetition. The opening is "Allegro maestoso," in 4/4 metre. There is a one-bar Timpani figure which introduces ff full band block chords featuring parallel movement of voices. The dynamic level decreases as woodwinds take over the chords, leading to a leggiero figure which moves over a repeated accompaniment. At letter C a contrasting section begins. It features a legato, cantabile melody, to be played "un poco largamente." At letter E there is a return to the opening material (block chords), "Tempo primo." This is followed by another contrasting section (beginning at letter F), which is "poco a poco piu agitato" with more complex rhythmic movement and changing metres (changes between 4/4 and 3/4). The movement becomes "poco a poco meno agitato," leading back to "Tempo primo" at letter K where material from letter A recurs. The cantabile theme from letter C recurs at letter L, "un poco largamente," becoming "piu largamente" at letter M and "molto largamente" at letter N. There is a "Tempo primo" at letter O as the composition concludes with material drawn from the opening, broadening out with an allargando in the final six bars. Crawley uses tonal harmony with extensions, chromaticism, and dissonance. Dynamic range is from pp to fff with frequent crescendo and diminuendo markings.

Technical Challenges: This piece depends for its colour and dramatic effect on the percussion section. Although the percussion parts are not generally difficult, they are at times exposed, and the playing must be confident. Woodwinds have frequent chromatic movement requiring the use of chromatic fingerings and side keys. There are frequent break crossings. Upper woodwinds have some difficult register changes. Flutes have some running sixteenths which involve some awkward leaps and tricky fingerings. In general, work is needed to achieve rhythmic precision, dynamic contrasts, and good ensemble blend and balance.

Pedagogical Value: This composition presents opportunities to work on ensemble precision, and to study the musical effectiveness of repetition and contrast.

 

CRAWLEY, CLIFFORD

TYENDINAGA

Musical Characteristics: This rhapsodic piece, subtitled "Legend for Concert Band," is based on "Ho, Ho, Watanay," an Iroquois Indian lullaby. Crawley uses many changes of tempo and style as he varies and elaborates on the Indian melodic material. Metre changes are frequent, with many different metres used ( 2/4, 3/4, 4/4, 5/4, 2/2, 3/2, 4/8, 6/8, 7/8, 8/8, 9/8, 10/8, 11/8 ). The piece begins "Adagietto," and at letter A moves to "Poco piu mosso." A rit. leads back to "Tempo primo" at letter B, and then an accel. leads to an "Allegro" in the fifth bar of letter C. There is a rit. leading to an "Andantino" at letter G. An "Allegretto scherzando" section begins at letter J. The piece continues through an "Allegretto" section (beginning at letter O) to an "Allegro" (letter T) moving to "Piu mosso" (one bar before letter U). There is a "Largamente" section at letter V, then an accel. to the concluding "Allegro." Rhythmic patterns change frequently, and some of the patterns are complex. Crawley uses the resources of the band effectively, exploiting contrasts in tone colour and texture. He makes frequent use of solo lines, and he also uses duets, trios, and sectional soli, as well as full band. The writing is mainly linear, with some chordal punctuation and harmonic support. The dynamic range is wide (ppp to ff, with frequent use of cresc., dim., sfz, fp, and sfz effects. There is also some use of mutes and hand stopping. The harmonic idiom is tonal with much use of changing modes and chromaticism.

Technical Challenges: There are some extreme ranges for Piccolo, Flute, E-flat Clarinet, Clarinet I, and Trumpet I. Woodwinds have frequent fast runs, chromatic fingerings, and quick break crossings, all of which require good dexterity. Brass chromatics also demand control and dexterity. Good fluency is needed as melodic material passes from one instrument or section to another. Solo lines must not be overbalanced by sustained chords. Confident players are required throughout the ensemble because of the independence of inner parts and the use of solo instruments. Intonation requires attention, especially on chromatic lines, on Flute and Clarinet I unison passages in the upper register, and on muted Trumpet passages. Complex rhythmic patterns and changes of metre need careful work.

Pedagogical Value: An effective piece which gives players opportunities to explore contrasts in texture, timbre, and style. It is excellent for developing ensemble skills, independence, and rhythmic awareness.

 

DAVIES, VICTOR

URCAPO: URANIUM CAPITAL OVERTURE

Musical Characteristics: This piece is in A B A (da Capo) form. The rock style A section features driving rhythms at a fast tempo (quarter note = 120 in 4/4 metre). The contrasting B section is lyrical in style and slower in tempo. There are occasional changes of metre to 5/4. Davies makes extensive use of syncopation in melodic and accompaniment figures. The introduction involves chromatic runs building rhythmically from eighth notes to sixteenth notes. Various textures are used, from full band to sectional and individual solo lines. The B section is generally thinner in texture, and features solo Flute and solo Trombone. Melodic and rhythmic motives are tossed back and forth from one section of the band to another. This is a colourful piece, exploiting the variety of different timbres available in the band. Muted Trumpet, stopped Horn, woodwind trills, and a large and varied percussion section add to the musical interest of the piece. The dynamic range is wide, and there are frequent changes of dynamics. The harmonic idiom is tonal, with chromaticism, dissonance, modulation, and movement between major and minor modes.

Technical Challenges: Chromaticism poses dexterity and intonation challenges. The extended chromatic run for woodwinds in the introduction demands good dexterity and rhythmic precision. Woodwind trills also require dexterity. There are some high ranges, especially for Flute I and Clarinet I. Bassoon, Bass Clarinet, Baritone, and Tuba have some repeated octave leaps which require good control. The changes of articulation must also be well controlled. Special care is needed when accents and sfz and sfzp effects occur in extended registers and at extreme dynamic levels. Because of the number and variety of percussion instruments required, the physical set-up of the percussion section must be well organized, and changes between instruments must be carried out efficiently. Rhythmic precision and careful counting are needed, especially on off-beat entries and syncopated figures. Sensitive listening is needed to achieve good balance, especially in layered rhythmic/melodic passages. The A section must be kept light and lively, not too heavy. Solo lines in the B section must be played with confidence.

Pedagogical Value: This colourful piece is useful for developing control of articulation and intonation. It also helps develop dexterity, rhythmic precision, and sensitivity to balance.

 

DOUGLAS, PAUL

SCHERZO

Musical Characteristics: This lively piece is marked "Allegro scherzando." It is in 3/4 metre, with dotted half = 112. Form is A B A, with a 32-bar introduction and a 36-bar coda. The piece features much repetition of rhythmic and melodic pattems. The introduction creates a pyramid effect as the rythmic pattem is repeated, increasing in dynamic level and intensity as texture gradually thickens, moving from pp Timpani, adding Basses, then Baritone, then Trombones I and II up through the band till the full band is playing homorhythmically. At the climax, four bars before letter A, the rhythmic pattem changes, leading into the ff statement of the opening theme of the A section, played by the full band. This theme features octave leaps and a descending G natural minor scale pattem. An ascending scale pattern motive in the lower woodwinds and brass and a chromatic figure in the upper woodwinds answer the descending motive. These three motives are repeated and developed, with changes of texture, instrumentation, and tonality. The B section is generally more thinly scored, and features solo instruments on a "gracioso" melodic figure (e.g., solo Oboe, then Clarinet, then Flute). A "D.S." leads back to the opening theme of the A section, and the coda builds in texture and intensity to a full band dramatic conclusion.

Technical Challenges: There are some extended ranges for Piccolo, Flutes, E-flat Clarinet, Clarinet I, Cornet I, and Trombone I. Good dexterity is needed because of the rapid speed of this piece. Special care is needed on eighth note passages, particularly those with many accidentals (e.g., the woodwind figures following letter A). Woodwind trills and grace notes require attention. Clarinets have frequent fast break crossings. Bassoon has some low, awkwardly fingered notes. Good blend of sound is needed in full band sections. Dynamics must be carefully observed and well controlled, since dynamic range is wide (pp to ff) and there are frequent sudden changes. Tuning requires special care when instruments play in extreme ranges and at dynamic extremes. Loud passages must not be too heavy in character or the "scherzando" feeling will be lost and the tempo will tend to bog down. Although the rhythmic pattems are not complex, the rapid speed makes their execution challenging. Homorhythmic passages must be very precise. Changes from triple to duple feeling pattems in 3/4 require special care.

Pedagogical Value: This piece provides opportunities to develop dexterity, tone, tuning, and rhythmic precision.

 

FLEMING, ROBERT

FOUR FANTASIAS ON CANADIAN FOLK THEMES

Musical Characteristics: This four-movement composition is based on Canadian folk songs. Movement I, "Out of Our Indian Heritage," is multisectional, featuring a variety of settings of an Iroquois melody, with many changes of tempo, metre, and style. Movement II, "Out of Old Quebec," is based on four folk songs: "J'entends le moulin," "Frere Jacques," "C'est l'aviron," and "A la claire fontaine." Metre is 4/4 except for a single bar of 2/4. There are frequent changes of tempo and style. Woodwind and brass choirs are effectively juxtaposed. Movement III, "Out of Newfoundland," is slow and lyrical. It is based on the folk song "She's Like the Swallow," scored for woodwinds and string bass. Metre is 6/8 throughout. Movement IV, "Out of the Prairies," is based on a western pioneer song, "The Old Sod Shanty." It is sectional, with changes of tempo, metre, and style. It concludes with a lively hoedown in 2/4, with quarter = 120. The four movements effectively exploit contrasts in texture and timbre. A wide dynamic range is used (pp to fff). Trumpet and Trombone mutes add timbral variety. Frequent modulations and use of extension chords and chromaticism add colour and variety to the simple folk song material.

Technical Challenges: Confident playing is needed on exposed solo lines. Good fluency and sensitivity to balance and blend are needed as melodic lines are interwoven through the band. Players must be alert to changes in tempo, metre, articulation, and style. Rhythmic precision is important. There are several rapid articulated passages and a few unusual rhythmic figures. The hoedown in Movement IV requires particularly good dexterity. There are some demanding upper range requirements, especially for Piccolo, Flutes, Clarinets, and Trumpets.

Pedagogical Value: This is a versatile and accessible composition. If the complete piece is too long, individual movements can be taught and performed. Because of the frequent doubling and cuing, the piece can be played by a band which does not have full instrumentation. This is an interesting study in contrasts. It is valuable for ensemble development, and it provides opportunities to study techniques used to build an extended work out of simple folk song materials.

 

FLEMING, ROBERT

THREE SCENARIOS FOR BAND

Musical Characteristics: Movement I is built on two main musical ideas. The decisive, energetic, fanfare-like opening in 3/4 contrasts with a more lyrical legato theme in 4/4 which begins at bar 23. This theme is developed through much of the movement. At bars 51 and 79 the opening materlal returns, followed by the lyrical theme. The movement concludes with the fanfare-like motive. Although metres change between 3/4 and 4/4, the quarter note pulse remains generally constant (quarter = 96) except for some tempo changes (e.g., rit. begins in bar 62, leading to "Poco meno mosso" at bar 67 and another rit. in bar 76). Tempo I returns in bar 79. There is a rall. in bars 97-8 and a molto rit. in the final three bars. Movement II also features two contrasting musical ideas. The opening is sustained and 1yrical, with 5-bar phrases. At bar 23, solo Trumpet I introduces a more rhythmic, articulated theme which is developed and passed from voice to voice. The lyrical opening theme reappears at bar 53, with the contrasting motive returning in bar 73, and the two ideas are combined to conclude the movement. It is in 3/4 throughout, with quarter = 72. Movement III has a scherzo quality. It is marked "Cheerfully," with quarter = 120. It features short rhythmic and melodic motives which are tossed back and forth from one section of the band to another, and which are developed and varied. A rit. in bar 33 leads to a slower section (quarter = 84) at bar 36. There is a poco accel. in bar 43 and a rall. in bars 45-6 which leads to a pause and a break before the D.S. In general, this composition is tonal with relatively straight-forward modulations. Harmonic interest is provided by mixing major and minor tonalities, and by the use of secondary dominants, seventh and neapolitan chords. There are some chromatic colours in accompanying voices. Melodic movement is generally scalar, triadic, or arpeggiated. There is little use of full band textures except at the ends of movements. Effective use is made of opposition between brass and woodwind choirs, especially in Movement III. Various melody and accompaniment textures are used within and between choirs. Dynamic range is from p to ff with a moderate number of dynamic changes. Occasional use is made of brass mutes.

Technical Challenges: There are some extreme range demands. In Movement I, changes of metre and tempo require attention. Clarinet sixteenth note figures in Movement II must be fluently played. Movement III is the most challenging technically because of the lively tempo (quarter note = 120). There are some tricky rhythms which must be played with precision. Entries after rests require special care. Articulation markings must be carefully observed and executed. Staccato sixteenths must be crisp and dry to avoid muddy sound. Brass accompanying figures must be light so as not to overpower moving lines. In general, sensitive listening is needed to achieve good balance between melody and accompaniment. Movement between woodwind and brass choirs must be fluent to avoid choppy, disjointed effects, especially in Movement III where short motives pass from one group to the next.

Pedagogical Value: This piece provides opportunities to work on tonal blend and balance, and to develop ensemble precision and sensitivity. It also presents an enjoyable context for work on articulation.

 

GAYFER, JAMES M.

AWARD OF MERIT

Musical Characteristics: Horns and Baritone play a fanfare introduction to this ceremonial march which the composer describes as "Elgarian" in style . The form is A B A and the harmonic idiom is tonal. The "Maestoso con moto" A section in B-flat major is strong and bold in style. The B section (Trio), in E-flat major, begins softly in a cantabile style, then builds to a grandioso climax as dynamics increase and the texture thickens. A D.S. leads back to section A, then a short coda provides a strong ff conclusion for the composition. The opening fanfare motive reappears in the coda and is also developed in the A section. Metre is 4/4 throughout. A wide dynamic range (pp to ff), some interesting harmonic movement, and effective contrasts in timbre, texture, rhythmic patterns and melodic style between section A and section B contribute to the musical interest of this composition.

Technical Challenges: There are some demanding ranges for Piccolo, Flute I and II, Clarinet I and II, Cornet I, and Tuba. Articulation requires careful work. Good dexterity is needed, especially on sixteenth note passages and on chromatic figures. Good blend and balance of sound must be sought. Special care is needed to avoid shrill sound when Piccolo and Flutes have very high passages. Rhythm must be precise, especially when patterns change (e.g., bars 7, 8, and 9 ) and when there are tricky juxtapositions of patterns (e.g., eighth note triplets against eighth notes in bar 9).

Pedagogical Value: This piece is useful for developing rhythmic precision, tone production, and ensemble blend and balance. It is an interesting study in style and contrasts.

 

GAYFER, JAMES M.

ST. JOHN AMBULANCE CANADIAN CENTENNIAL MARCH

Musical Characteristics: This quick march is traditional in form and style. It is in 6/8 metre throughout, with "dotted quarter note = 120." The rhythmic patterns are generally straight-forward, and there is frequent homorhythmic movement. The piece is solidly tonal, moving from D- to F+ and back to D- in the march. The trio is in B-flat major with frequent I to V movement in the bass line. Gayfer uses some chromatic harmonies and chromatic passing tones to add colour and variety. The scoring is generally thick, with frequent doubling of parts (unisons and octaves). A four-bar introduction leads to the stong and vigorous march. The trio begins softly and more cantabile in style, then builds to an effective ff conclusion.

Technical Challenges: The speed of this composition makes it technically challenging. Good dexterity is needed. Fast chromatic fingerings and changing articulations require good control. There are frequent rapid break crossings for woodwinds, and some very high ranges for Piccolo, Flute I, Oboe I, and Clarinet I. Because there are very few rests in any part, endurance may be a problem. Balance and blend require careful attention because of the thick texture and frequent doubling of parts. Where voices move homorhythmically, clarity and precision must be sought. Intonation requires attention, especially when instruments have extreme ranges.

Pedagogical Value: This composition is useful for developing dexterity, control, and ensemble precision within a straight-forward musical style.

 

GAYFER, JAMES M.

THE WELLS OF MARAH

Musical Characteristics: This descriptive tone poem is subtitled "Episodes in the Saga of the Selkirk Settlers in Canada." The composer's program note explains that the Selkirk settlers were forced to leave the Red River district. Like the Israelites leaving Eygpt, they "suffered indignity and hardship; drank of the bitter wells of Marah before they found their Canaan on the Scotch Line in West Guillimbury township below Barrie." The form is broadly A B A coda. A quiet opening, "Lento ma con moto," introduces a calm, lyrical main theme. There are frequent metre changes (4/4, 5/4, and 6/4). The composition progresses through a series of episodes of varying degrees of intensity and drama, with extension, development, and evolution of the basic thematic material. There are frequent tempo changes. The A section features gradual increases in speed (piu mosso, accel., poco stringendo, and poco piu mosso), while the metre remains 4/4. Dynamics and intensity also increase, building to a ff at letter C, "Con fuoco," and to a full band accented quarter note figure, "con tutti la forza." The tempo then decreases (meno mosso, rallentando, molto rall.) to a "Lento solenelle" section in cut time. Further tempo variations occur (e.g., Adagio, ma non troppo lento in 4 metre, then poco allargando). Mood, style, and dynamics also change (e.g., intense, sonore e cantabile at letter I, calando leading into letter K, molto calmato e diminuendo after letter K). A D.S. leads back to letter A, and a triumphant coda follows the "con tutti la forza" climax after letter E. At letter N, Gayfer introduces a broadly lyrical theme, "The Homesteading Song of the Selkirk Settlers," which is played in canon as intensity builds. The composition broadens to a fff full band climax in the final bars. The harmonic idiom is tonal, with frequent borrowed chords (e.g., modal, secondary dominants and dominant sevenths, some neapolitan and augmented sixths), and some chromaticism and temporary modulations. Textures and timbres vary, with some use of solo instruments, contrasts between woodwinds and brass, and contrasts between upper and lower voices. Use of muted Trumpet and Horn, and stopped notes on Horn add to the timbral variety. Melodic lines are prominent and are supported by harmonic accompaniment.

Technical Challenges: Because of the importance of the melodic material, good balance must be sought so that the melodies can be clearly heard. Good blend of sound is needed, with emphasis on warm, cantabile tone. There are some high register passages for Flute which require good control, especially where dynamics are loud and where sfz articulations and sustained trills are required. There are also some difficult ranges for Clarinet I, Bassoon I, and Cornet I. Careful ensemble work is needed to achieve good intonation in modulatory and chromatic passages. Good dexterity is needed on the triplet figures in the "Con fuoco" section (letter C). Accidentals must be carefully observed. Changes of tempo, metre, and dynamics require attention, and changing rhythmic patterns must be precisely executed.

Pedagogical Value: This piece provides opportunities to develop cantabile tone, and good ensemble blend, balance, intonation, and rhythmic precision. It is an interesting study in contrasts and in tone painting suggesting a film score. The link with Canadian history is also of interest.

 

KULESHA, GARY

DIVERTIMENTO FOR WINDS

Musical Characteristics: This is a three-movement work. Movement I is in A B A' form, with quarter note = 108 in 4/4 metre. Movement II is also in A B A' form, with eighth note = 84 in 4/4 metre. Movement III is another fast movement (quarter note = 92, mainly in cut time, with occasional changes to 3/2 and 2/4) A lively melody, played first by Trumpet I, then more thickly scored and doubled, introduces the movement. A broad A B A' formal design follows, with the A section featuring an energetic melody which begins with a crisply articulated octave leap, and the B section beginning with a more cantabile legato melody. Melodic material is developed and passed from voice to voice throughout the movement. This composition is rhythmically straight-forward with melodic appeal. Dynamic contrasts are effectively used, with a dynamic range from pp to fff. Muted Trumpet and Trombone add timbral variety. Changes of texture from transparent to full band sonorities also contribute to the musical interest of this composition. Kulesha uses quartal and quintal harmonies, with consonance, dissonance, and chromaticism.

Technical Challenges: Good dexterity is needed in fast passages, especially where there is chromatic movement. Changes of articulation must be carefully observed and well controlled. Dynamic changes also require attention. Tone production and intonation need careful work, especially where there are extreme ranges, muting, octave doublings, and dissonances.

Pedagogical Value: This is an accessible piece which provides opportunities to develop technical dexterity, precise articulation, and aural skills. It is an interesting study in contrasts.

 

KULESHA, GARY

ENSEMBLES FOR WINDS

Musical Characteristics: A three-movement work which explores various instrumental combinations (ensembles) within the band. Movements I and III are slow, Movement II is fast and rhythmically active. Movement I has frequent metre changes (4/4, 2/4, 3/4, 5/4 ), with quarter note = 56. It is sustained in style, moving mainly by step or small leaps. The rhythmic motion is slow, and there are frequent ties over the bar line. The movement begins softly, builds to af climax, then gradually softens to end ppp. Movement II is fast, energetic, and brilliant. Metre is 2/2 except for two bars of 3/2, with half note = 80. The style is highly accented, and there are accents and entrances on various parts of the beat. The movement is scored for brass, piano, and percussion, with piano and percussion alone in the opening and concluding bars. The slow third movement has quarter note = 56, with changes of metre (4/4, 3/4, 5/4, 2/4). Like Movement I, it starts softly, builds to a climax (fff), then gradually softens. It is sustained and chorale-like in style, and features full band as well as various ensembles within the band. The composition is tonal, but Kulesha does not use conventional functional harmonies. He uses dissonance, parallelism, and polytonality to good effect. Short melodic and rhythmic motives are developed, and various textures and timbres are contrasted. The dynamic range is wide (ppp to fff), with gradual and sudden changes. Use of stopped Horn, changes between String Bass arco and pizzicato, and dampening effects on percussion add variety and colour.

Technical Challenges: This composition presents intonation challenges. Careful listening is needed on dissonant chords. Good control of tuning and tone is needed, especially when there are extreme dynamic levels and extreme ranges. Chromaticism and whole tone movement require that woodwind players be familiar and fluent with chromatic fingerings and side keys. Stopped notes for the Horns in Movement III can be played with regular mutes if the stopping presents intonation problems. If the E-flat Clarinet part is too difficult, it can be rewritten for Flute. Articulation requires careful work. Accents in Movements I and III must be played gently, without hard tonguing. Irregular and interlocking phrase patterns present ensemble challenges. Changing metres must be carefully observed. Movement II presents rhythmic challenges to the ensemble. Entries must be precise, and parts must fit together exactly.

Pedagogical Value: This composition presents opportunities to work on intonation, balance, dynamics, articulation, phrasing, rhythm, and changing textures and timbres. It is a valuable study in expressive playing within a contemporary compositional style. Useful for ensemble development.

 

KULESHA, GARY

OVERTURE FOR CONCERT BAND

Musical Characteristics: Overture featuring the development of clearly stated melodic material. Considerable variety of texture from thin to thick, including some passages for solo instruments. For example, the piece opens with three solo instruments (Trumpet I and II, Trombone I) moving in rhythmic unison. In bar 7, tutti Trumpet I and II and Trombone I repeat the opening material with the addition of a homorhythmic bass line played by Bassoon I and II, Baritone Sax, Trombone III, Tuba, and String Bass. Bar 13 (letter A) features full band. Throughout the piece there is a good deal of variety in the combinations of instruments used. Solo Flute I, Oboe, Clarinet I, and Bassoon are featured prominently. An effective solo passage for the percussion section begins at letter L. Dynamic contrasts are exploited, with a wide range of dynamics (from pp to fff). Various meters are used (4/4, 2/4, 3/2, 3/4), with 4/4 being predominant. In the opening and closing sections of the piece, the tempo is quarter note = 86, while the middle section is faster (quarter note = 128). There are also some more subtle tempo changes (e.g., "slightly faster," rit., and rit. molto). Some of the rhythmic patterns are moderately complex.

Technical Challenges: There are some extended ranges which require good tone control. Endurance may be a problem for Flutes and Piccolo which have extended ff passages in the extreme upper register, and for the Trumpets which play almost continuously for the last 68 bars at extreme dynamic levels, with Trumpet I in the upper register. Tuba has some rapid movement through the upper register requiring excellent control and dexterity. The piece is generally difficult in terms of its dexterity demands (e.g., chromatic fingerings in woodwinds; some awkward register changes for Flutes and Piccolo; some altissimo fingerings for E-flat Clarinet; some use of Bassoon cross fingerings above d' at a fast tempo; frequent Clarinet break crossings at a fast tempo; large leaps in brass; use of Euphonium cross fingerings, often at a rapid tempo; some rapid shifts and string crossings for String Bass; frequently changing percussion stick patterns at a fast tempo). Exposed solo lines require confident, competent players whose tone projects well.

Pedagogical Value: This piece provides opportunities to develop technical skills (e.g., dexterity, tone production, intonation), and to develop ensemble sensitivity and fluency as musical lines pass from one instrument or section to another. Presents challenging solo opportunities for leaders within the band. To aid a band with incomplete instrumentation or some weaker players, Kulesha has cued the Oboe, Bassoon, Alto Clarinet, and Horn parts elsewhere, although he notes in the score that the Horn I part "should be regarded as indispensible."

 

KULESHA, GARY

VARIATIONS FOR WINDS

Musical Characteristics: In the opening section, Bass Clarinet introduces the theme, a few notes at a time. Kulesha then uses such compositional techniques as fragmentation, rhythmic extension, diminution and augmentation to develop and vary the theme. There are numerous metre changes in this opening section (4/4, 3/4, 3/2, 7/4 with quarter note = 66). At letter B, an energetic, rhythmic variation begins. Tempo increases to quarter note = 96, and there are frequent metre changes (4/4, 3/4, 2/4, 3/2). At letter E there is an interesting alternation of metric and non-metric bars. At letter G, the tempo changes again (dotted quarter note = 46) and a variation in 6/8 begins, very thinly scored. This variation exploits changes of texture and timbre. The next variation begins at letter J, with a change of metre to 4/4, and a change of tempo to quarter note = 100. This variation features rhythmic augmentation of the theme. The lower voices play the theme as a kind of "cantus firmus" over which other voices move. The final section of the composition is similar in style and tempo to the opening section, but the theme is again varied. The composition is rhythmically interesting, with syncopations and overlapping rhythmic groupings (e.g., in the 7/4 bars after letter A). Kulesha uses contemporary harmonies, featuring dissonance, chromaticism, chord clusters, and some quartal, quintal, modal, and whole tone effects. The composition exploits a wide variety of textures from solo lines to full wind ensemble. There are some interesting antiphonal and pyramid effects. The dynamic range is wide (pp to fff).

Technical Challenges: Tone production must be well controlled, especially where extended ranges are used. Flutes have some particularly demanding upper register notes. Careful distinction should be made between regular and legato tonguing. Good dexterity is needed on chromatic passages. Trombones have a demanding passage at letter B where the rhythmic patterns and the articulation must be precise, and slide movement and intonatlon require good control. Pitch changes for Timpani require attention. Within the ensemble, unison and octave doublings and dissonances must be carefully tuned. Sensitive listening is needed to achieve good balance between melody and accompaniment figures. Exposed solo lines and staggered entries must be played with confidence. Rhythmic challenges include metre changes, entrances on unaccented beats, ties across and within bars, syncopations, and the overlapping rhythmic figures after letter A.

Pedagogical Value: This piece presents opportunities to analyze a variety of compositional techiques for varying a theme. It is useful for rhythmic, aural, and ensemble development.

 

LEGRADY, THOMAS

CONCERTINO GROSSINO FOR SAXOPHONE QUARTET AND CONCERT BAND

Musical Characteristics: A lively one-movement piece. Following a brief introduction, the Saxophone quartet introduces a jaunty theme which is treated in a scherzo-like manner, passing between the band and the quartet. A contrasting section follows, featuring some Latin American rhythms. This is followed by a D.S. to letter B, and a coda after the eighth bar of letter D. The Saxophone quartet parts are written in close harmony with Soprano Sax on top and Tenor Sax assuming the bass line. Irregular and chromatic chord progressions with use of extended harmonies and dissonance. Considerable variety in the treatment of the melodic materials, and frequent rhythmic variation. Metre is 4/4 throughout. Wide dynamic range with quite frequent sf and sfp effects.

Technical Challenges: Dexterity and rhythmic precision are required on sixteenth note runs. Repeated rhythmic accompanying figures

must be light and precise. Special care is needed when different rhythmic patterns are combined. Mixed articulation patterns require careful attention and good control. Where short imitative figures are passed from one instrument to another, playing must be fluent. Good balance between melody and accompaniment must be sought. Saxophone quartet must blend well on homorhythmic passages. Accidentals, chromatic harmonies, dissonances and extended Flute range present intonation challenges.

Pedagogical Value: This piece provides opportunities to challenge capable Saxophone players, and to explore the relationships between the soloists and the band. This piece also presents opportunities to study compositional techniques used to vary a melody.

 

LEGRADY, THOMAS

SPRING FESTIVAL

Musical Characteristics: This piece is in A B A form with a lively melodic A section and a Latin style B section. A D.C. leads back to the A section, and a short coda concludes the work. Metre is common time throughout, with quarter note = 96, Allegro moderato. There is a good deal of homorhythmic movement, and there is frequent repetition of melodic and rhythmic material. Melodic lines are carried by Flutes, First Clarinets, solo Bass Clarinet, solo Trumpet, and solo Horn. Scoring is often thick, but textural variety is used to good effect. Dynamics range from p to ff. The harmonic idiom is tonal.

Technical Challenges: Articulation markings must be carefully observed. The style must be light and lively even when scoring is heavy. Off-beat patterns and accents must be precisely articulated. Ensemble precision is necessary, especially when voices move homorhythmically. Dexterity is needed on the sixteenth note woodwind figures. Good balance between melody and accompaniment must be sought. Special care is needed when texture is thick. Solo instruments (Bass Clarinet, Trumpet, Horn) must play with confidence.

Pedagogical Value: This piece is accessible for performers and audience. It is useful for developing rhythmic precision, clarity of articulation, and ensemble sensitivity to balance.

 

MURGATROYD, VERNON

ENTRANCE FESTIVE

Musical Characteristics: A single movement piece in A B A coda form. The A section is marcato with strong chordal punctuation. The B section is lyrical but quick. The piece is motivic in nature and quasijazz in style. It features variations in articulation and dynamics. There are several metre changes, but the quarter remains the basic unit. Fast tempo (quarter note = 168). Some interesting writing for the percussion section, with a variety of percussion instruments used.

Technical Challenges: Changing articulations and dynamics require careful attention. Trumpet I range is high. There are a few awkward runs. Although the rhythms are not difficult, the sense of rhythmic displacement and the rapid tempo present challenges to the performers. The piece must not slow down or become too heavy. Suspensions must be carefully tuned, and accented chords well balanced.

Pedagogical Value: An interesting study in changing articulations, dynamics and metres. Contrasting woodwind and brass sections provide opportunities to work on tuning and balance. Tuneful and easy to understand.

 

RIDOUT, GODFREY

TAFELMUSIK

Musical Characteristics: A two-movement work. Movement I, Blues, is in A B A coda form. It is tonal, being based on a blues scale on F. There are quite frequent chromatic embellishments characteristic of the blues idiom, and some chordal extensions characteristic of the jazz idiom. It is in a slow 4/4, with quarter note = 60. Extensive use of triplets, and frequent use of ties to produce syncopated patterns. In the A section, Trumpet I introduces the blues melody, Clarinet I takes over melodic interest in bar 7, and a duet between the two instruments follows. Bassoons and Horn II provide a chromatic accompaniment. In the B section, Flutes I and II and the Trombones are featured, with Bassoons and Tuba providing a simple accompaniment. Trombones use plunger mutes in the B section and the coda. Trumpet I uses a wa-wa mute in the coda. Movement II, "Finale," is a brilliant Allegro in 4/4 with quarter note = 132. It features an introductory triplet passage, followed by three contrasting themes. This material is then developed. The melodic material is folk-like in style, with chordal and rhythmic accompaniment figures reminiscent of Bartok. The principal tonal centre is F, with much chromaticism, some parallel fourths, chordal extensions, and mixing of modes. There is considerable variety of texture and timbre as melodic interest passes from one instrument to another. There is a wide dynamic range (p to ff) with quite frequent dynamic changes contributing to the showy quality of the movement.

Technical Challenges: Movement I requires sustained legato playing with appropriate blues inflection. Skill with mutes is needed. Movement II has fast passage work in most parts, requiring good dexterity and fluency. Strong, confident, independent playing is needed, especially from the first player of each section. After the individual parts are learned, slow and careful rehearsal is needed so players become confident on their entrances. There are frequent sequential entries, and lines are exposed since often only a few instruments play at a given time. Dynamic contrasts must be well controlled, as must articulation (contrasts between legato and staccato). In both movements, players need rhythmic accuracy, especially on triplet and off-beat figures, and in passages where triplets must be played against duplet figures. Good balance between melody and accompaniment is needed. Special care is required where there are two-part contrapuntal melodic lines with additional accompaniment. Intonation requires attention due to chromaticism and modal inflections, sometimes compounded by extended registers.

Pedagogical Value: An effective and challenging composition. Movement I stands well by itself and should be playable by senior bands at the high school level. Movement II is more technically demanding and provides challenges for the most technically and musically advanced high school performers. It is a real showpiece for talented players. Both movements are excellent for developing independence and a sense of ensemble, and for working on articulation, dynamics, and dexterity. Tafelmusik presents many rhythmic challenges, and is an interesting study in changing textures. It also provides opportunities for students to analyse how a composer incorporates elements of different styles into his work (blues style in Movement I, folk-like style in Movement II).

 

RODRIGUE, NICOLE

DESASTRE

Musical Characteristics: Stylistically contemporary, this piece is graphically notated, with time indicated in seconds. Explanatory notes and instructions to aid the conductor and performers are provided in French. Performers have considerable freedom in interpreting the graphic notation. No traditional rhythm, melody, or harmony. Some specific pitches are indicated, including some short chromatic patterns. The main interest lies in changing textures and timbres. Textures vary from sparse pointillistic textures to thick, densely scored passages involving layers of sound events and independent instrumental lines. An expressive improvised Trombone solo is featured. Dynamic variations and contrasts between sound and silence are exploited. Dynamics range from pp to ff. The piece builds to a ff climax, then disappears with the sound of a candle being blown out. Various timbres are used, including many contemporary instrumental playing techniques and some vocal sounds.

Technical Challenges: Some high notes are specified for Flute (up to f’’’-sharp), but for the other instruments, ranges specified are not difficult. Players can use more extreme ranges if they wish to do so when realizing graphically notated passages. Similarly, players' own decisions will affect the level of difficulty of articulation and dsxterity. Good control is required for the dynamic changes and the various contemporary playing techniques which are called for (e.g., micro-tone fluctuations and vibrato effects, circular breathing, flutter tonguing, colour fingerings, fast repeated pedal tones, glissandi, half valve techniques). There are some rapid changes between instruments in the percussion section. Students must be very alert in listening to each other and in following the conductor. (He or she may indicate one beat per second, conducting a 4/4 pattern, but there is no conventional rhythmic notation and there must be no use of the accent structure inherent in the usual 4/4 pattern.) Unusual tone clusters and dissonant sounds must be carefully tuned and balanced. An overall sense of musical form and dramatic shaping must be sought.

Pedagogical Value: An interesting and effective contemporary composition which provides opportunities to explore and control a variety of instrumental timbres. Students are challenged to explore their instruments and to make musical decisions. A useful study in realizing graphic notation. Excellent for developing listening and ensemble skills.

 

SIRULNIKOFF, JACK

OVERTURE FOR BAND: GREEN MOUNTAIN OVERTURE

Musical Characteristics: A showy overture featuring contrasts in tempo and style. A short introduction (Moderato, in 5/4, then 4/4, with quarter note = 76) features contrasts between sustained and staccato motives. The crisply articulated style is picked up in the energetic Allegro section (quarter note = 116 in 4/4 ) which begins two bars before letter A. The slower middle sectlon is more cantabile, legato, and expressive in style. The tempo changes, first to quarter note = 76, then to quarter note = 60, then to quarter note = 76, with frequent ritard, rubato, piu mosso and meno mosso markings. There are also changes of metre (4/4 and 2/4, then 3/4). A lively Allegro section begins the sixth bar of letter F, with quarter note = 116 again, this time in 2/4. The style is again energetic with crisp articulation and rhythmic drive. Metre changes to 4/4 at letter L as material from letter A returns. There is a rit. to a meno mosso section at letter N, with quarter note = 100. At letter O there is an "A Tempo," then there is a broadening in the final bars (meno mosso, then allargando). The harmonic idiom is tonal, but there are frequent secondary modulations and shifts in mode. Sirulnikoff uses chromatic chords, extensions, and semitone clashes. Rhythms are generally straight-forward, with quite frequent syncopations. The Allegro sections make frequent use of fanfare-type rhythmic patterns. There is considerable variety of texture (e.g., solo lines; sectional soli; woodwinds and brass answering back and forth; full band). There is effective use of melodic ornamentation in the slow lyrical middle section, and in the second Allegro section. Dynamic range is from pp to ff. There is one passage for stopped Horn, and several muted passages for Trumpets and Trombones.

Technical Challenges: Homorhythmic, energetic brass choir and woodwind choir sections demand rhythmic precision, good blend of sound, and carefully matched articulation, especially where staccato and accents are featured. Well controlled legato style and good balance and blend of sound are required in the slower, cantabile passages. Good fluency is needed when instruments answer back and forth with short melodic and rhythmic motives. Whenever exposed solo passages occur, they must be played with confidence and control. Woodwinds require good dexterity, especially on sixteenth note runs, chromatic passages, and ornaments. The triplet passage at letter N for Flutes, Oboes, and Clarinets requires careful staggered breathing and snatch breaths. The chromatic sixteenth note passage for Saxophones (beginning at letter C) requires good dexterity and staggered breathing. There are some extended ranges for Flutes and Clarinets.

Pedagogical Value: Sirulnikoff's use of woodwind and brass choirs provides excellent opportunities to work on ensemble tone, balance, blend, tuning, and matching articulation. This piece is valuable for developing rhythmic precision. It also presents opportunities for solo playing within the ensemble. This is an interesting study in contrasts.

 

SIRULNIKOFF, JACK

POLKA DOTS

Musical Characteristics: A light concert piece in A B A (da capo) form. Lively tempo (quarter note = 112 ) in 2/4 metre. The upper woodwinds have showy melodic and rhythmic figures. There is an interesting variety of textures, exploring a wide range of band colours, although the brass instruments are not given melodic lines. Xylophone shares some important melodic figures with the woodwinds. The B section is more thinly scored than the A section. Fairly frequent dynamic changes, ranging from pp to ff, with changes usually being terraced rather than gradual. Although the brass do not share the woodwinds’ rhythmically active melodic figures, there are some demanding brass rhythmic accompanying figures involving short rests and off-beat entries. Tonal but with a good deal of chromaticism adding colour and interest.

Technical Challenges: Technically demanding for woodwinds because of high range and because of the dexterity challenges of rapid fingered passages which involve some tricky leaps, chromatic fingerings, and awkward register changes. Articulation is also demanding, especially on brass sixteenth note figures and on rapid staccato high register passages in Flute and Oboe at soft dynamic levels. One-bar glissando effects in Flute must be well controlled. Percussion section must be carefully organized physically to facilitate changes between instruments. Ensemble precision is important on the rhythmically active melodic lines and also on the tricky off-beat accompanying figures. The tempo must be kept steady and the playing fluent as figures are tossed from one instrument to another. Good balance is needed between melody and accompanying figures.

Pedagogical Value: An appealing and challenging piece which presents opportunities to develop articulation, dexterity, fluency, control of tone, and rhythmic precision.

 

SWAN, JOHN D.

FANTASY ON "THE BRITISH GRENADIERS"

Musical Characteristics: Fantasia on the familiar tune "The British Grenadiers." Considerable variety in the treatment of the theme. For example, the melody is played by various instrumental combinations; it is decorated with lyrical running eighth note figures and with brass fanfare figures; various metre changes occur (4/4, 3/4, and 6/8 are used); the theme is fragmented; motives from the theme in augmentation are used as an ostinato. Tonal, moving from B-flat major to E-flat major and back to B-flat major. Some use of secondary dominants and diminished sevenths. Energetic march-like style with quarter note = 120-132 in 4/4 and 3/4 metres, and quarter note = dotted quarter note in 6/8. The 3/4 sections often use rhythms which suggest 6/8. Wide dynamic range (pp to fff). Some muted Cornet passages, upper woodwind trills, and a Trombone glissando provide some variety in instrumental timbre.

Technical Challenges: Good dexterity is needed where rapid finger and slide changes are called for (especially on eighth and sixteenth notes and on trills). Articulations must be well controlled especially on the fanfare figures. Rhythmic precision is important. Some loud high register passages (e.g., for Clarinet I, Cornet I, Horn I) require good control and endurance. Good balance is needed between melody and accompaniment as melodic material passes from one section of the band to another.

Pedagogical Value: A musically accessible piece which provides opportunities for analyzing techniques used to vary a given theme. Provides rhythmic, articulation, and dexterity challenges which can aid individual and ensemble development.

 

WEINZWEIG, JOHN

OUT OF THE BLUES

Musical Characteristics: This 6-movement composition explores jazz/blues styles. The harmonic idiom is atonal, and the scoring is generally light. There is much use of exposed solo lines, and also frequent use of duets, trios, and other combinations of voices. The dynamic range is wide (ppp to ff), and there is considerable timbral variety, with frequent use of special effects (e.g., various types of brass mutes; altemating open and closed notes in quick succession for Horn; Trumpet I rip effect; Trombone glissando). Blues style is evident in rhythmic and melodic figures throughout the composition. There is frequent use of grace notes, silence, syncopation, and repeated rhythmic patterns. Movement I, "Deep Blues," features antiphonal effects as a slow and mournful Euphonium and Tuba duet is followed by a cool woodwind answer featuring blue notes and grace notes. A Trumpet solo is featured at number 6. Only one pitch is used but it is varied rhythmically. Metre changes frequently. (4/4, 3/4, 2/4, and 5/4 are used.) Tempo changes back and forth, alternating between quarter note = 66 and quarter note = 76. Movement II, "Raging Blues," features Timpani answering back and forth with woodwind and brass instruments. Metre changes from 4/4 to 3/4 and 2/4, with quarter note = 63. Movement III, "Meditation Blues (1)," is very thinly scored. It features a plaintive Clarinet solo, with some support from the other Clarinets, then Horns and Euphonium. Metres change frequently (2/4, 3/4, 4/4) with quarter note = 72. Movement IV, "Jumpin' Blues," features contrasts of tempo, style, and timbre. At a fast tempo (quarter note = 132), there is a swinging Clarinet figure, strongly rhythmic brass and woodwind punctuation, and a colourful percussion passage. The tempo changes to quarter note = 72 for a free sounding muted Trumpet solo. There is considerable use of repetition as the fast and slower sections alternate. In the fast sections, there are frequent metre changes (4/4, 3/8, 5/8, 2/4, 3/4). Movement V, "Meditation Blues (2)," is similar to Movement III, but it features solo Flute instead of solo Clarinet. Movement VI, "All Together Blues," opens with a ppp sixteenth note passage for Clarinets. Solos in an improvisatory style by Flute I, Trumpet I (muted), Trombone I, Clarinet I, and Alto Sax follow. Then the 5 soloists repeat their previous solos, but this time together. The movement concludes with reminiscences of motives from Movements III, V, and I.

Technical Challenges: Complex rhythms must be accurate, but the freedom of the blues style must not be sacrificed for the sake of metronomic accuracy. Players must feel the style. Grace notes ornamenting Flute, Oboe, and Clarinet melodic figures require good control while projecting a sense of freedom. Sixteenth note passages need good dexterity and control (e.g., Clarinets, Piccolo, Flutes, Oboes, Horns, Trumpets, and percussion in Movement IV; Clarinets in Movement VI). Confident playing is necessary because of the thin textures. Fluency must be sought as lines pass from one solo voice or section to another. Good tone control is needed to produce the required dynamic contrasts and blues style.

Pedagogical Value: This piece provides excellent opportunities for developing rhythmic skills, tone production, ensemble sensitivity, and a feeling for blues styles.

 

WUENSCH, GERHARD

SIX GUISES

Musical Characteristics: This piece is designed as an exploration of various compositional techniques. A short introduction is followed by a theme and six variations. Each variation exemplifies a different compositional style as the theme is presented in various "guises." Guise I uses traditional harmony, with quite frequent modulations and some chromaticism. Guise II uses modal harmony, and Guise III is polytonal. Guise IV uses mixed metres (2/8, 3/8, 4/8, 5/8, 6/8) with the eighth note pulse constant at a quick tempo (quarter note = 160). Guise V uses twelve-tone technique. Guise VI (Finale) is a grand march which is contemporary but very straight-forward in style. Its harmonic idiom is tonal with quite frequent use of dissonant added seventh, second, and ninth chords. The witty narrative line (written by Keith MacMillan) guides the performers and listeners in the exploration of the compositional process as the theme is "dressed" in various styles. Wuensch explores a wide variety of textures ranging from homophonic to polyphonic, from thick full band to thin soloistic textures. Guise V, to be played with only one instrument per part, features pointillism. The dynamic range is wide (from pp to ff) with much use of sudden dynamic changes and gradual cresc. and dim. effects. Although Guise IV focuses especially on metrical changes, the other Guises also involve some changes of metre and some rhythmic complexities.

Technical Challenges: This is a challenging ensemble piece because of the changing styles. Intonation requires careful work, particularly in the polytonal Guise III and the atonal Guise V. Tone must be well controlled, especially on extreme and subtle dynamics and on passages involving high ranges. (Piccolo, Flute I, and Trumpets have particularly demanding ranges.) There are quite frequent articulation changes, and these also demand good control. Changing metres and complex rhythmic pattems require careful attention. The fast speed of Guise IV makes it particularly challenging in terms of rhythm and dexterity. Fluency and a good sense of line are needed in pointillistic passages.

Pedagogical Value: This piece provides opportunities to work on a variety of different styles. It is excellent for analysing various compositional techniques, and for developing ensemble skills, especially with regard to articulation, dexterity, rhythm, and intonation.

 

ZADUBAN, GEORGE

TOCCATINA

Musical Characteristics: This piece uses a loose A B A formal design. An energetic opening section features a syncopated melodic figure. This is followed by a contrasting section featuring more lyrical melodic lines, supported by syncopated off-beat accompanying figures. Material from the opening section is then repeated and developed. Various textures are used, with contrasts between imitative and melody-accompaniment textures. Effective use is made of full band sound and alternation between woodwinds and brass. The piece is marked Allegro, and features changes of metre from common time (sometimes written as 4/4) to 3/4 and 6/8. The harmonic idiom is tonal, with modulations and alternation of major and minor modes adding to the musical interest. Dynamics range from p to ff.

Technical Challenges: Good dexterity is needed on the sixteenth note scalar figures. Changes of articulation require careful attention. Special care is needed to differentiate between the various kinds of accents. Confidence is needed on imitative entries. Rhythmic precision is important. Changing metres and syncopated rhythmic patterns require attention. Careful counting is needed so that overlapping woodwind and brass rhythmic figures fit exactly together (e.g., see bars 42 and 43). Homorhythmic accompanying figures must be clean and precise, and must not overbalance the melody. Intonation requires work, especially where accents occur in extended registers and at loud dynamic levels.

Pedagogical Value: This is a showy and accessible piece which provides opportunities to develop rhythmic precision and ensemble sensitivity, and to work on intonation, fluency, and changing articulations. It is a useful study in contrasts.

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