"Entry of the Gladiators" (Thunder & Blazes) for Piano

Uploaded on Apr 11, 2012

Julius Fučík (pronounced "Foo-chick") was a Czech composer who lived from 1872 – 1916 and was a conductor of military bands. Today his marches are still played as patriotic music in the Czech Republic. However, his worldwide reputation rests on this one work: the Opus 68 march, the Entrance of the Gladiators (Vjezd gladiátorů), which is universally recognized, often under the title "Thunder and Blazes", as one of the most popular theme tunes for circus clowns.

"Entrance of the Gladiators" or "Entry of the Gladiators" was originally titled it "Grande Marche Chromatique," reflecting the use of chromatic scales throughout the piece, but changed the title based on his personal interest in the Roman Empire.
The piece is a little longer than this but the rest is not so familiar to most people.

Although originally created for band, this arrangement is for the acoustic grand piano and It is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).

Entry of the Gladiators Circus Theme Thunder and Blazes

Pages 6
Duration 3:08
Measures 127
Key signature natural
Parts 1
Privacy Everyone can see this score
License None (All rights reserved)
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Thanks for this transcription and the history as well. It's gonna be a while before I'll be able to play this one. :)

I played this for a piano recital just last Sunday, and although I didn't do the greatest I think I will go and do a video score now that I am more comfortable with the piece. I have been taking some liberties with it but I have also been trying to stick to it fairly close to it. *shrugs*
I'll see about getting a videoscore up, then you guys can judge. :)

Yup I think I shall try to learn this... for some reason I think this would be epic at a recital. :) Almost everybody knows the theme and you did a good job transcribing it. I'm not exactly sure what I will do about the ornamental notes starting at measure 54. But I am sure I can figure something out. :)

Hi there. I hope you are still there. When the music sheet says trio, does that mean three people have to be playing? If only one person should be playing, would the grace notes be played first and then b flat on measure 55?

In reply to by Zstupee

Zstupee, It is for a single (keyboard) instrument. Here, the term TRIO is used to describe any instrumental composition for three unaccompanied musical strands, regardless of the number of instruments actually involved (in this case 1). Trios for a single keyboard instrument are also found in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach, for example his organ trios, BWV 525–30, and three-part inventions, or Sinfonias, BWV 787–801.

In reply to by Mike Magatagan

Thank you for your response. I am currently working on this song based on your music sheet. I am confused on measure 55 because the first 4 treble clef notes on that measure are impossible to play together on the piano. According to the midi you provided and the youtube video, it seems it is played together. How would you actually play it on a piano?

Corrected 5/10/2012: Mr Steven Turner pointed-out an incorrect cord on measure 118 (A-C should have been octave A-A). This has been corrected and re-posted. Thank you Steven!

As MuseScore does not currently support playback of articulations or ornaments (Trills and Tremolos), I used the "Hidden Voice" method to incorporate what I believe are correct representations of these effects.

Please click on the "VideoScore" link to the right to hear an accurate sound representation of the piece. MuseScore currently does not replicate the Acoustic Piano soundfont correctly on the online site.