Interchangeable Woodwind Ensemble
This lyrical piece is composed using ternary (ABA) form and gives every section an opportunity to shine. Filled with rich use of harmony and a flowing melody, As the River Flows is a great way to teach an ensemble expressive style.
In Dreams is a musical representation of exactly what our dreams are like: peaceful, calming, horrific, and unpredictable; yet, there is always something to remember about them when we wake up. This piece reflects that by manipulating a memorable eighth note motif through various styles, feels, tempos, and instrumentation.
Using the style of Canadian folk songs from the east coast and the story telling features of Newfoundland, A Fisherman's Tale is a piece about a trip out into the ocean. The piece opens with the solemn, chorale-like movement Farewell, as the fisherman leaves his home and family to begin the excursion, and closes with Return to Harbour, an up tempo movement representing the worker's successful homecoming.
This mournful piece is based on a Canadian folk song which is an account of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, where the British, led by General Wolfe, captured Quebec City from the French, under General Montcalm. This lyrical arrangement makes use of rich harmonies influenced by jazz and pop music. There are some great solo sections to feature a talented alto saxophone, clarinet and flute member of the ensemble.
El Camino (The Road) is a Spanish march composed in the traditional style of a pasodoble. This piece is fast paced and energetic from start to finish and sounds more complicated than it seems! This is something a little different in the march category that will have audiences tapping their toes.
Queen Anne's Revenge was the final ship sailed by Edward Thatch, also known as the pirate, Blackbeard. To give the "pirate-like" feeling to the music, it has been composed in 6/8 time, as have many pieces about pirates. Great melodies and driving rhythms - argh!
Legacy is a song of heroic nature and is a great way to introduce polyrhythmic texture to a young band. This piece opens with a high energy feel that can represent a hero. The piece moves into a lyrical section that can be portrayed as the hero's downfall. A new melody is introduced by the alto saxophone solo, which is later countered by the flutes and trumpets. The high energy melody returns again, bringing the piece to an exciting conclusion.
Maiden Voyage is a song about celebration. Although the term 'maiden voyage' refers to a boat's first adventure, it can represent any first successful event. Great rhythmic interest and memorable themes make this a fun piece to play and ideal for contest or concert use.
Mission: Secret is a classic spy tune written using a 12-bar blues form. It mostly comprises of a catchy bass line riff with a simple, sustained melody over top. Although short solos are written in the a couple parts, these may also be improvised using an C concert blues scale (C Eb F F# G Bb). Super Spy!
Ancient civilizations represent many things about life as we know it today: power, beauty, intelligence, and ambition. This piece reflects all of these qualities, from the driving force of the ancient armies, to the elegance of ancient architecture.
Shimmer is a calm, reflective piece that is reflected by the meaning of the word itself: to shine with a subdued flickering light, as in a reflection on water. The main melody is simple and repeated several times throughout, each time mixed with various harmonies, contrapuntal techniques, rhythmical figures, or counter melodies, to keep the music interesting for performers and listeners.
This is a highly energetic piece that your quintet and audience will certainly enjoy. The piece opens with a mysterious feeling, introducing some of the melodic content, before moving into the fast (and triumphant!) tempo.
Inspired by two folk songs from the arranger's Dutch heritage, Two Holland Tales is a piece that combines both lyrical and upbeat sections. Daar waren twee koningskinderen (There Were Two Royal Children) is the opening lyrical movement. The piece then moves into Toen ik op Nederlands bergen stond (I Once Stood On the Netherland's Hills). This is a fast movement in 6/8.
The Heather is one of the national flowers of Scotland. This purple flower flourishes in the damp, rainy weather of Scottish moorland, glens and hills. The piece opens with the instruments imitating the drone of the bagpipes setting the stage for a lone soloist. Throughout the remainder of the work the melody is passed to many voices. It is reflective and expressive.
Something Modal is a laid back jump swing chart. The melodies and backgrounds are very simple, yet very catchy. Chord changes are simple enough to open up opportunities for players to practice and show off their improvising abilities.
For those who have enjoyed Last Voyage of the Queen Anne's Revenge or Burning of the Royal Fortune, here is another exciting instalment to the pirate theme at a more challenging level.