Sheet music for English Horn

"Fossils" from the "Carnival of the Animals" for Winds & Strings

13 parts7 pages01:212 years ago2,986 views
Piccolo, Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon, Percussion, Violin(2), Viola, Cello, Contrabass
"The Carnival of the Animals" is a musical suite of fourteen movements by the French Romantic composer Camille Saint-Saëns.

It was composed in February 1886 while Saint-Saëns was vacationing in a small Austrian village. It was originally scored for a chamber group of flute/piccolo, clarinet (B flat and C), two pianos, glass harmonica, xylophone, two violins, viola, cello and double bass, but is usually performed today with a full orchestra of strings, and with a glockenspiel substituting for the rare glass harmonica. The term for this rare 11-piece musical ensemble is a "hendectet" or an "undectet."

Saint-Saëns, apparently concerned that the piece was too frivolous and likely to harm his reputation as a serious composer, suppressed performances of it and only allowed one movement, Le cygne, to be published in his lifetime. Only small private performances were given for close friends like Franz Liszt.

Saint-Saëns did, however, include a provision which allowed the suite to be published after his death. It was first performed on 26 February 1922, and it has since become one of his most popular works. It is a favorite of music teachers and young children, along with Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf and Britten's The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra. In fact, it is very common to see any combination of these three works together on modern CD recordings.

Movement 12. Fossiles (Fossils)

Strings, two pianos, clarinet, and xylophone: Here, Saint-Saëns mimics his own composition, the Danse macabre, which makes heavy use of the xylophone to evoke the image of skeletons playing card games, the bones clacking together to the beat. The musical themes from Danse macabre are also quoted; the xylophone and the violin play much of the melody, alternating with the piano and clarinet. The piano part is especially difficult here - octaves that jump in quick thirds. Allusions to "Ah! vous dirai-je, Maman" (better known in the English-speaking world as Twinkle Twinkle Little Star), the French nursery rhymes "Au clair de la lune", and "J'ai du bon tabac" (the piano plays the same melody upside down), the popular anthem Partant pour la Syrie, as well as the aria Una voce poco fa from Rossini's The Barber of Seville can also be heard.


Although originally written for 2 Pianos & Orchestra, I created this arrangement for Winds (Piccolo, Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn & Bassoon) & Strings (2 Violins, Viola, Cello & Bass).

"Alla Hornpipe" (HWV 349 No. 12) for Wind Ensemble

8 parts6 pages03:275 years ago2,615 views
Trumpet, French Horn, Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet(2), Bassoon
The Water Music is a collection of orchestral movements, often considered three suites, composed by George Frideric Handel. It premiered on 17 July 1717 after King George I had requested a concert on the River Thames. The concert was performed by 50 musicians playing on a barge near the royal barge from which the King listened with close friends, including Anne Vaughan, the Duchess of Bolton, the Duchess of Newcastle, Countess of Darlington, the Countess of Godolphin, Madam Kilmarnock, and the Earl of Orkney. The barges, heading for Chelsea or Lambeth and leaving the party after midnight, used the tides of the river. George I was said to have enjoyed the suites so much that he made the exhausted musicians play them three times over the course of the outing.

The triple-time hornpipe dance rhythm was often used by composers in England in the Baroque period. It is probably artificial to draw too rigid a distinction between the popular and art-music examples. Many country dance examples are found in The Dancing Master, such as "The Hole in the Wall", by Purcell, and there are also extant theatrical choreographies that use steps from French court ballet, but which characteristically have step-units going across the measure. Henry Purcell and George Frideric Handel composed hornpipes, and Handel occasionally gave "alla hornpipe" as a tempo indication (see Handel's Water Music). Today, the most well-known baroque hornpipe tune is probably Purcell's "Hornpipe Rondeau" from the incidental music to Abdelazer (which was used by Benjamin Britten as the theme for his Young Person's Guide To The Orchestra) or the 'Alla Hornpipe' movement from the D major of Handel's Water Music suites. Hornpipes are occasionally found in German music of this period.

Although this piece was originally written for Orchestra, I arranged it for Wind Ensemble (Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Bb Clarinet, French Horn, C Trumpet, Bass Clarinet & Bassoon).

"The Heavens Are Telling" (H.21/2 Part 1 No. 13) for Woodwind Septet

7 parts8 pages03:345 years ago2,388 views
Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet(2), French Horn, Bassoon
The Creation (German: Die Schöpfung) is an oratorio written between 1796 and 1798 by Joseph Haydn (H. 21/2), and considered by many to be his masterpiece. The oratorio depicts and celebrates the creation of the world as described in the biblical Book of Genesis and in Paradise Lost. It is scored for soprano, tenor and bass soloists, chorus and a symphonic orchestra, and is structured in three parts.

No. 13. Die Himmel erzählen die Ehre Gottes (The heavens are telling the glory of God)

The text is based on Psalm 19:1–3, which had been set by Bach as the opening chorus of his cantata Die Himmel erzählen die Ehre Gottes, BWV 76. Haydn's century, following on the discoveries of Newton, had the view that an orderly universe—particularly the mathematically-governed motion of the heavenly bodies—attests to divine wisdom. Haydn, a naturally curious man, may have had an amateur interest in astronomy, as while in England he took the trouble to visit William Herschel, ex-composer and discoverer of Uranus, in his observatory in Slough.

"Die Himmel erzählen" is not in the home key of Part I, C minor, but is instead in C major, showing the triumph of light over dark. It begins with alternation between celebratory choral passages and more meditative sequences from the three vocal soloists, followed by a choral fugue on the words "Und seiner Hände Werk zeigt an das Firmament", then a final homophonic section. ("The wonder of his works displays the firmament" is the English text here, with word-order calqued from the German, but somewhat awkward compared to the Authorized Version's "And the firmament sheweth the handywork of God".) The unusual intensity of the ending may be the result of Haydn's piling of coda upon coda, each occurring at a point where the music seems about to end.

Although this piece was originally written for Opera, I arranged it for Woodwind Septet (Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Bb Clarinet, French Horn, Bass Clarinet & Bassoon). This piece is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).

"Ubi Caritas et Amor" for Woodwind Ensemble

7 parts3 pages01:335 years ago2,350 views
Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon(2)
Maurice Duruflé (1902 – 1986) was a French composer, organist, and pedagogue.

Duruflé was born in Louviers, Eure. In 1912, he became chorister at the Rouen Cathedral Choir School, where he studied piano and organ with Jules Haelling. At age 17, upon moving to Paris, he took private organ lessons with Charles Tournemire, whom he assisted at Basilique Ste-Clotilde, Paris until 1927. In 1920 Duruflé entered the Conservatoire de Paris, eventually graduating with first prizes in organ, harmony, piano accompaniment, and composition. His harmony professor was Jean Gallon.

Ubi caritas is a hymn of the Western Church, long used as one of the antiphons for the washing of feet on Maundy Thursday. The Gregorian melody was composed sometime between the fourth and tenth centuries, though some scholars believe the text dates from early Christian gatherings before the formalization of the Mass. It is usually sung at Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament and on Holy Thursday evening at the Mass of the Lord's Supper. The current Roman Catholic Missal (1970, 3rd typical edition 2000) reassigned it from the foot-washing mandatum to the offertory procession at the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord's Supper, and it also is found in current Anglican and Lutheran hymnals.

Although originally created for chorus, I created this arrangement for a Woodwind Ensemble (Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon and Contrabassoon) to highlight the pure power and rich bass of this piece.

"Santa Maria Strella Do Dia" (No. 100) for Wind Quintet

5 parts2 pages01:374 years ago1,904 views
Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn
Alfonso X (1221 – 1284), called the Wise (Spanish: el Sabio), was the King of Castile, León and Galicia from 30 May 1252 until his death. During the Imperial election of 1257, a dissident faction chose him to be King of the Romans (Latin: Rex Romanorum; German: Römisch-deutscher König) on 1 April. He renounced his imperial claim in 1275, and in creating an alliance with England in 1254 his claim on Gascony also.

Alfonso established Castilian as a language of higher learning, and was a prolific author of Galician poetry, such as the Cantigas de Santa Maria, which are equally notable for their musical notation as for their literary merit. Alfonso's scientific interests—he is sometimes nicknamed "the Astrologer" (el Astrólogo)—led him to sponsor the creation of the Alfonsine tables, and the Alphonsus crater on the moon is named after him. As a legislator he introduced the first vernacular law code in Spain, the Siete Partidas. He created the Mesta, an association of sheep farmers in the central plain, but debased the coinage to finance his claim to the German crown. He fought a successful war with Portugal, but a less successful one with Granada. The end of his reign was marred by a civil war with his eldest surviving son, the future Sancho IV, which would continue after his death.

Alfonso X commissioned or co-authored numerous works of music during his reign. These works included Cantigas d'escarnio e maldicer and the vast compilation Cantigas de Santa Maria ("Songs to the Virgin Mary"), which was written in Galician-Portuguese and figures among the most important of his works. The Cantigas form one of the largest collections of vernacular monophonic songs to survive from the Middle Ages. They consist of 420 poems with musical notation. The poems are for the most part on miracles attributed to the Virgin Mary. One of the miracles Alfonso relates is his own healing in Puerto de Santa María.

Although originally written for 5 Viols (Tr, Tr, T, T, B) and percussion, I created this arrangement for wind quintet (Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet, English Horn & French Horn) and It is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).
"Morning Has Broken" for Woodwind Sextet
Custom audio

"Morning Has Broken" for Woodwind Sextet

6 parts2 pages02:245 years ago1,884 views
Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon
"Morning Has Broken" is a popular and well-known Christian hymn first published in 1931. It has words by English author Eleanor Farjeon and is set to a traditional Gaelic tune known as "Bunessan" (it shares this tune with the 19th century Christmas Carol "Child in the Manger"). It is often sung in children's services. English pop musician and folk singer Cat Stevens included a version on his 1971 album Teaser and the Firecat. The song became identified with Stevens when it reached number six on the US pop chart and number one on the US easy listening chart in 1972.

This hymn (UMH #145) is sung during Holy Communion at the Sierra Vista United Methodist Church (SVUMC) as well as other United Methodist churches.

Although originally written for Chorus, I created this arrangement for Woodwind Sextet (Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn & Bassoon).
"Sei gegrüßet, Jesu gütig" (BWV 768) for Woodwind Quartet
Custom audio

"Sei gegrüßet, Jesu gütig" (BWV 768) for Woodwind Quartet

4 parts13 pages09:286 years ago1,444 views
Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Bassoon
The terms "Partita diverse," "partite diverse," "chorale partite," and "chorale variations" are fairly interchangeable and refer to a set of variations on a church chorale prelude or organ chorale. These, in turn, are terms that refer to a solo organ presentation of a Lutheran chorale melody (in whole or in part), rooted in the idea of playing the melody of a hymn before the congregation was to sing it, in order to familiarize them with the tune. Church organists of Bach's caliber often improvised on these familiar chorale themes and sometimes preserved their improvisations as sets of variations.

Bach left four sets of chorale variations that are fully accepted as his, of which this one is the largest, best integrated, and most comprehensive in the variety of variation techniques and textures that it employs. The first three sets are all relatively early works. The final set of chorale variations, the Canonic Variations on "Vom Himmel hoch," was written quite late in Bach's life.

The exact timing of composition of this and the other early chorale partitas causes lively discussion among Bach scholars. The first two might have been written when he worked in Lüneberg when he was between 15 and 17 years old and had a chance to work with Georg Böhm, a composer prolific in the chorale variation genre. Others point to the fine part-writing and motivic development that developed later in Bach's career. The style is consistent with compositions written in Arnstadt and Mühlhausen, where Bach worked until 1708, when he entered the service of Duke Wilhelm Ernst of Saxe-Weimar. Some scholars point out that Bach was known to write music in the style of this partita during his Weimar years.

For the purpose of this arrangement, I chose 6 of the 11 variations that lent themselves to adaptation for woodwind quartet. I took some creative license with the parts as necessary to remain playable within the ranges of the respective instruments.

Although written for organ, I arranged this piece for a non-standard Woodwind Quartet (Flute, Oboe, English Horn and Bassoon).

"Hallelujah Chorus" from "The Messiah" (HWV 56 No. 44) for Choir (SATB), Handbells & Orchestra

20 parts23 pages03:41a year ago1,394 views
Voice(4), Trumpet(2), Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon, Timpani, Percussion(3), Strings(4)
The "Messiah" (HWV 56) is an English-language oratorio composed in 1741 by George Frideric Handel, with a scriptural text compiled by Charles Jennens from the King James Bible, and from the Psalms included with the Book of Common Prayer (which are worded slightly differently from their King James counterparts). It was first performed in Dublin on 13 April 1742, and received its London premiere nearly a year later. After an initially modest public reception, the oratorio gained in popularity, eventually becoming one of the best-known and most frequently performed choral works in Western music.

Handel's reputation in England, where he had lived since 1713, had been established through his compositions of Italian opera. He turned to English oratorio in the 1730s, in response to changes in public taste; Messiah was his sixth work in this genre. Although its structure resembles that of conventional opera, it is not in dramatic form; there are no impersonations of characters and very little direct speech. Instead, Jennens's text is an extended reflection on Jesus Christ as Messiah, moving from the prophetic phrases of Isaiah and others, through the Incarnation, Passion and Resurrection of Christ to his ultimate glorification in heaven.

Handel wrote Messiah for modest vocal and instrumental forces, with optional settings for many of the individual numbers. In the years after his death, the work was adapted for performance on a much larger scale, with giant orchestras and choirs. In other efforts to update it, its orchestration was revised and amplified by (among others) Mozart. In the late 20th and early 21st centuries the trend has been towards authenticity; most contemporary performances show a greater fidelity towards Handel's original intentions, although "big Messiah" productions continue to be mounted.

At the end of his manuscript Handel wrote the letters "SDG"—Soli Deo Gloria, "To God alone the glory". This inscription, taken with the speed of composition, has encouraged belief in the apocryphal story that Handel wrote the music in a fervour of divine inspiration in which, as he wrote the "Hallelujah" chorus, "he saw all heaven before him". Many of Handel's operas, of comparable length and structure to Messiah, were composed within similar timescales between theatrical seasons.

Although originally written for Full Orchestra, I created this arrangement for Choir (SATB, English Handbells, Percussion (Tubular Bells & Timpini) & Orchestra (Piccolo Trumpet, Bb Trumpet, Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon, Violins, Violas & Cellos).

Fantasia & Fugue in G Minor (BWV 542 "The Great") for Pipe Organ

3 parts16 pages11:432 years ago1,229 views
Recorder(2), English Horn
The Great Fantasia and Fugue in G minor, BWV 542, is an organ prelude and fugue by Johann Sebastian Bach. It acquired that name to distinguish it from the earlier Little Fugue in G minor, which is shorter. This piece is not to be confused with the Prelude and Fugue in A minor, which is also for organ and also sometimes called "the Great".

It was transcribed for piano by Franz Liszt as S.463. Modern arrangers have orchestrated the work.

Evidence suggests that J.S. Bach completed and revised the Fantasia and Fugue in G minor for organ, BWV 542, as an audition for an organist position in Hamburg in 1720. Bach didn't get the job, but, happily enough, posterity did get the piece; generations of organists since then have considered it one of their repertoire's crown jewels. The two parts of BWV 542 (the fantasia -- sometimes titled Prelude instead -- and the fugue) are thought to have been composed separately: the fugue is assigned Bach's Weimar years (1708-1717) and the fantasia to his time in Cöthen (1717-1723, but, if the audition theory is correct, not later than 1720).

The fantasia opens spaciously and in recitative-like style, but as it unfolds Bach finds room for dense passages in upper-voice imitation. There are five more or less balanced sections to this fantasy; intensely dramatic sections are interwoven with quieter, more even passages. The wide tonal scope of the fantasia has been a subject of fascination for two centuries of musicians: just when some kind of harmonic stability seems to arrive, Bach shoots off on a mock-improvised cadenza that jolts the music into a whole new pitch realm. Thus the fantasia both lives up to its name and contains quite a bit of contrapuntal rigor, and then, on top of that, more than one worthy mind has deemed the fugue to be Bach's ultimate accomplishment in the field of organ counterpoint. The task of selecting a king from that noble crowd, however, is not an enviable one. Though it provides the sense of a stable answer to the fantasia in its predominantly even sixteenth note rhythms, it is similarly ambitious harmonically: Bach makes two revolutions through the entire circle of fifths. The fugue makes a fine contrast with the later music of the fantasia while nevertheless seeming of a piece with it.

Source: AllMusic (http://www.allmusic.com/composition/fantasia-and-fugue-for-organ-in-g-minor-great-bwv-542-bc-j42-57-67-mc0002358946).

I created this transcription of the Great Fantasia and Fugue in G minor (BWV 542) for Pipe Organ.

"Arabian Dance" from the Nutcracker Suite (Opus 71a Mvt. 5) for Small Orchestra

12 parts11 pages0310 months ago1,036 views
Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon, Timpani, Violin(2), Viola, Cello, Contrabass
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840 - 1893) was a Russian composer who lived in the Romantic period. He is one of the most popular of all Russian composers. He wrote melodies which were usually dramatic and emotional. He learned a lot from studying the music of Western Europe, but his music also sounds very Russian. His compositions include 11 operas, 3 ballets, orchestral music, chamber music and over 100 songs. His famous ballets (Swan Lake, The Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty) have some of the best known tunes in all of romantic music.

Tchaikovsky's ballet of the Nutcracker is based on Alexandre Dumas' translation of the original tale by E.T.A. Hoffman. Act One tells a story of how little Clara aids her magical Christmas gift (a nutcracker in the form of a soldier) defeat an army of mice. As a reward, in Act Two, he takes her to his magic kingdom and introduces her to a variety of subjects in a colorful stream of character dances. Tchaikovsky was initially displeased with the scenario for the ballet, which would be his last, because it lacked real drama. However, he reconciled himself to it and completed the Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a, which was popular from its first performance, before going on to complete the entire ballet. Those seven dances -- including the familiar Spanish (Chocolate), Arab (Coffee), Chinese (Tea), and Russian dances -- and the overture are essentially the same as they appeared in the final, full ballet. To these he added interludes and scenes, with music and orchestrations that are just as delightful. His supply of lovely themes is endless, and he constantly provides brilliant orchestration. Unique features of his instrumentation include the Overture, which is entirely without cellos and double basses; the "Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy," which was inspired by the new celesta, an instrument Tchaikovsky encountered in Paris while working on the score; and the "Waltz of the Snowflakes," which uses a children's chorus. He also used toy instruments, perfectly in keeping with a story for children. The ballet was not as successful as his other stage works when it first appeared, however, now the traditional Christmas ballet is so popular that its annual performance keeps many a ballet company afloat. If all you know of this ballet is the famous suite, by all means hear the entire work.

Source: Wikipedia (https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyotr_Ilyich_Tchaikovsky).

Although originally created for Orchestra, I created this Transcription of the "Arabian Dance" from the Nutcracker Suite (Opus 71a Mvt. 5) for Small Orchestra (Flutes, Oboes, Bb Clarinets, English Horns, French Horns, Bassoons, Timpani, Violins, Violas, Cellos & Bass).

Aria: "Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui Sancto" (BWV 191 No 2) for Woodwind Trio & Strings

7 parts9 pages08:024 years ago926 views
Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Strings(4)
Gloria in excelsis Deo (Glory to God in the Highest), BWV 191, is a church cantata written by the German Baroque composer Johann Sebastian Bach, and the only one of his church cantatas set to a Latin text. He composed the Christmas cantata in Leipzig probably in 1745 to celebrate the end of the Second Silesian War on Christmas Day. The composition's three movements all derive from the Gloria of an earlier Missa written by Bach in 1733, which the composer would later use as the Gloria of his Mass in B minor.

Gloria in excelsis Deo was written in Leipzig for Christmas Day, as indicated by the heading on the manuscript in Bach's own handwriting, "J.J. Festo Nativit: Xsti." (Jesu Juva Festo Nativitatis Christi -- Celebration for the birth of Christ), to be sung around the sermon. Recent archival and manuscript evidence suggest the cantata was first performed not in 1743, but in 1745 at a special Christmas Day service to celebrate the Peace of Dresden, which brought to an end the hardships imposed on the region by the Second Silesian War.

Its only link to Christmas is the opening chorus on Luke (Luke 2:14), to be performed before the sermon. The other two movements after the sermon (marked "post orationem") divide the general words of the Doxology in a duet Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui sancto (corresponding to the Domine Deus, the central piece of the Gloria of the Mass in B minor) and a final chorus Sicut erat in principio (corresponding to Cum sancto spiritu of the Gloria). The final movement may contain ripieno markings (to accompany the chorus) similar to the ripieni found in Unser Mund sei voll Lachens, BWV 110, which was also a nativity cantata.

Unlike Bach's other church cantatas, the words are not in German, taken from the bible, a chorale or contemporary poetry, but in Latin, taken from the Gloria and the Doxology. This late work is the only Latin cantata among around 200 surviving sacred cantatas in German. It is based on an earlier composition, the Missa in B minor (Kyrie and Gloria) which Bach had composed in 1733 and that would, in 1748, become part of his monumental Mass in B minor. The first movement (Gloria) is an almost identical copy of the earlier work, while the second and third movements are close parodies. Parts, for instance, of the fugal section of Sicut erat in principio, taken from the Cum sancto spiritu of the 1733 setting, are moved from a purely vocal to an instrumentally accompanied setting. The modifications Bach made to the last two movements of BWV 191, however, were not carried over into the final manuscript compilation of the Mass in B minor, leaving it a matter of speculation whether or not these constitute "improvements" to Bach's original score.

The cantata bears the heading ::J.J. Festo Nativit: Xsti. Gloria in excelsis Deo. à 5 Voci. 3 Trombe Tymp. 2 Trav 2 Hautb. 2 Violini Viola e Cont. Di J.S.B. in Bach's own handwriting. The cantata is festively scored for soprano and tenor soloists and an unusual five-part choir (with a dual soprano part), three trumpets, timpani, two flauto traverso, two oboes, two violins, viola, and basso continuo. Its only link to Christmas is the opening chorus on Luke (Luke 2:14), to be performed before the sermon. The other two movements after the sermon (marked "post orationem") divide the general words of the Doxology in a duet Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui sancto (corresponding to the Domine Deus, the central piece of the Gloria of the Mass in B minor) and a final chorus Sicut erat in principio (corresponding to Mass in B minor structure#Cum sancto spiritu of the Gloria). The final movement may contain ripieno markings (to accompany the chorus) similar to the ripieni found in Unser Mund sei voll Lachens, BWV 110, which was also a nativity cantata.

Source: Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gloria_in_excelsis_Deo,_BWV_191).

I created this arrangement of the Duetto Aria: "Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui sancto" (Glory to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit) for Woodwind Trio (Flute, Oboe & English Horn) & Strings (2 Violins, Viola & Cello).
"Trepak" from the Nutcracker Suite (Opus 71a Mvt. 4) for Small Orchestra
Custom audio

"Trepak" from the Nutcracker Suite (Opus 71a Mvt. 4) for Small Orchestra

16 parts11 pages01:0610 months ago920 views
Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, Bassoon, Trumpet, French Horn, Trombone, Tuba(2), Timpani, Violin(2), Viola, Cello, Contrabass
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840 - 1893) was a Russian composer who lived in the Romantic period. He is one of the most popular of all Russian composers. He wrote melodies which were usually dramatic and emotional. He learned a lot from studying the music of Western Europe, but his music also sounds very Russian. His compositions include 11 operas, 3 ballets, orchestral music, chamber music and over 100 songs. His famous ballets (Swan Lake, The Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty) have some of the best known tunes in all of romantic music.

Tchaikovsky's ballet of the Nutcracker is based on Alexandre Dumas' translation of the original tale by E.T.A. Hoffman. Act One tells a story of how little Clara aids her magical Christmas gift (a nutcracker in the form of a soldier) defeat an army of mice. As a reward, in Act Two, he takes her to his magic kingdom and introduces her to a variety of subjects in a colorful stream of character dances. Tchaikovsky was initially displeased with the scenario for the ballet, which would be his last, because it lacked real drama. However, he reconciled himself to it and completed the Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a, which was popular from its first performance, before going on to complete the entire ballet. Those seven dances -- including the familiar Spanish (Chocolate), Arab (Coffee), Chinese (Tea), and Russian dances -- and the overture are essentially the same as they appeared in the final, full ballet. To these he added interludes and scenes, with music and orchestrations that are just as delightful. His supply of lovely themes is endless, and he constantly provides brilliant orchestration. Unique features of his instrumentation include the Overture, which is entirely without cellos and double basses; the "Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy," which was inspired by the new celesta, an instrument Tchaikovsky encountered in Paris while working on the score; and the "Waltz of the Snowflakes," which uses a children's chorus. He also used toy instruments, perfectly in keeping with a story for children. The ballet was not as successful as his other stage works when it first appeared, however, now the traditional Christmas ballet is so popular that its annual performance keeps many a ballet company afloat. If all you know of this ballet is the famous suite, by all means hear the entire work..

Source: Wikipedia (https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyotr_Ilyich_Tchaikovsky).

Although originally created for Orchestra, I created this Transcription of the "Trepak" from the Nutcracker Suite (Opus 71a Mvt. 4) for Small Orchestra (Flutes, Oboes, Bb Clarinets, English Horns, Bassoons, Bb Trumpets, French Horns, Trombones, Euphoniums, Tubas, Timpani, Violins, Violas, Cellos & Bass).

"But Who May Abide" (HWV 56 No. 6) For Wind Ensemble

6 parts6 pages06:505 years ago910 views
Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet, French Horn, Bassoon
The "Messiah" (HWV 56) is an English-language oratorio composed in 1741 by George Frideric Handel, with a scriptural text compiled by Charles Jennens from the King James Bible, and from the Psalms included with the Book of Common Prayer (which are worded slightly differently from their King James counterparts). It was first performed in Dublin on 13 April 1742, and received its London premiere nearly a year later. After an initially modest public reception, the oratorio gained in popularity, eventually becoming one of the best-known and most frequently performed choral works in Western music.

Handel's reputation in England, where he had lived since 1713, had been established through his compositions of Italian opera. He turned to English oratorio in the 1730s, in response to changes in public taste; Messiah was his sixth work in this genre. Although its structure resembles that of conventional opera, it is not in dramatic form; there are no impersonations of characters and very little direct speech. Instead, Jennens's text is an extended reflection on Jesus Christ as Messiah, moving from the prophetic phrases of Isaiah and others, through the Incarnation, Passion and Resurrection of Christ to his ultimate glorification in heaven.

Handel wrote Messiah for modest vocal and instrumental forces, with optional settings for many of the individual numbers. In the years after his death, the work was adapted for performance on a much larger scale, with giant orchestras and choirs. In other efforts to update it, its orchestration was revised and amplified by (among others) Mozart. In the late 20th and early 21st centuries the trend has been towards authenticity; most contemporary performances show a greater fidelity towards Handel's original intentions, although "big Messiah" productions continue to be mounted.

The three-part structure of the work approximates to that of Handel's three-act operas, with the "parts" subdivided by Jennens into "scenes". Each scene is a collection of individual numbers or "movements" which take the form of recitatives, arias and choruses. There are two instrumental numbers, the opening Sinfony in the style of a French overture, and the pastoral Pifa, often called the "pastoral symphony", at the mid-point of Part I.

"But who may abide" is an Air for alto, as a human reaction to the words of God, shows the trembling in the expectation of the Lord's appearance twofold in a dramatic scene. The Air begins with the pensive question "But who may abide" and continues, in a sharp shift of time and tempo "Prestissimo", with the statement "For He is like a refiner's fire". Forceful downward runs, leaps and trills of the voice are accompanied by fiery figuration in the strings. Like a da capo, the pensive question is repeated, but in a short version, giving way once more to a prestissimo section. The statement returns a final time after a rest, marked Adagio, giving the soloist the opportunity to express it in an ultimate cadenza. A prestissimo postlude concludes the dramatic scene. Handel wrote this dramatic scene in London in 1750 for the castrato Gaetano Guadagni, after he had initially set the text as a recitative.

Although originally written for Bass Solo & Continuo, I created this arrangement for Wind Ensemble (Flute, Oboe, Bb Clerinet, English Horn, French Horn & Bassoon) and it is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).
Aria: "Kron und Preis Gekrönter Damen" (BWV 214 No. 7) for Piano & Double Reed Trio
Video

Aria: "Kron und Preis Gekrönter Damen" (BWV 214 No. 7) for Piano & Double Reed Trio

4 parts6 pages05:205 years ago849 views
Oboe, English Horn, Bassoon, Piano
Tönet, ihr Pauken! Erschallet, Trompeten! (Resound, ye drums! Ring out, ye trumpets!), BWV 214,[a] is a cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach. He composed this cantata in 1733 to honor the 34th birthday of Maria Josepha, Queen of Poland and Electress of Saxony. It is also known as Glückwünschkantate zum Geburtstage der Königin (Congratulation cantata to the queen's birthday). It was first performed on 7 December 1733. The librettist of the text is unknown, but may have been Bach himself.

Parts of this secular work were reworked for Bach's Christmas Oratorio.

The opening chorus is a very long da capo form. Unusually for Bach, it opens with a timpani solo. The vocal lines are mostly homophonic or imitative – it is the instrumental forces that are the focus of the movement. Musicologist Julian Mincham notes that "the sweeping exhilaration of this movement is impossible to describe in words".

The tenor recitative conveys imagery of a thunderstorm and is followed by a soprano aria and recitative representing the "clashing of arms" and the battlefield. The alto aria, the only movement in the minor mode, includes a prominent oboe d'amore, while the following recitative is accompanied by chordal strings.

The bass da capo aria has a majestic obbligato trumpet line that underlines the "triumph, dignity and splendor" of the queen. The text focuses on the dual themes of fame and virtue. The penultimate movement is a bass recitative with a woodwind accompaniment. The piece ends with a dance-like chorus

The work features four vocal soloists: Bellona (soprano), Pallas (alto), Irene (tenor), and Fama (bass). It is also scored for a four-part choir, three trumpets, timpani, two flutes, two oboes, oboe d'amore, two violins, viola, cello, violone, and basso continuo.

Source: Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T%C3%B6net,_ihr_Pauken!_Erschallet,_Trompeten!_BWV_214).

I created this arrangement of the third Aria: "Kron und Preis gekrönter Damen," (Crown and trophy of royal ladies) for Piano & Double Reed Trio (Oboe, English Horn & Bassoon).

"Dance of the Reed Pipes" from the Nutcracker Suite (Opus 71a Mvt. 7) for Small Orchestra

17 parts10 pages02:0610 months ago803 views
Flute, Oboe, Clarinet(2), English Horn, Bassoon, Trumpet, French Horn, Trombone, Tuba, Percussion, Timpani, Violin(2), Viola, Cello, Contrabass
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840 - 1893) was a Russian composer who lived in the Romantic period. He is one of the most popular of all Russian composers. He wrote melodies which were usually dramatic and emotional. He learned a lot from studying the music of Western Europe, but his music also sounds very Russian. His compositions include 11 operas, 3 ballets, orchestral music, chamber music and over 100 songs. His famous ballets (Swan Lake, The Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty) have some of the best known tunes in all of romantic music.

Tchaikovsky's ballet of the Nutcracker is based on Alexandre Dumas' translation of the original tale by E.T.A. Hoffman. Act One tells a story of how little Clara aids her magical Christmas gift (a nutcracker in the form of a soldier) defeat an army of mice. As a reward, in Act Two, he takes her to his magic kingdom and introduces her to a variety of subjects in a colorful stream of character dances. Tchaikovsky was initially displeased with the scenario for the ballet, which would be his last, because it lacked real drama. However, he reconciled himself to it and completed the Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a, which was popular from its first performance, before going on to complete the entire ballet. Those seven dances -- including the familiar Spanish (Chocolate), Arab (Coffee), Chinese (Tea), and Russian dances -- and the overture are essentially the same as they appeared in the final, full ballet. To these he added interludes and scenes, with music and orchestrations that are just as delightful. His supply of lovely themes is endless, and he constantly provides brilliant orchestration. Unique features of his instrumentation include the Overture, which is entirely without cellos and double basses; the "Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy," which was inspired by the new celesta, an instrument Tchaikovsky encountered in Paris while working on the score; and the "Waltz of the Snowflakes," which uses a children's chorus. He also used toy instruments, perfectly in keeping with a story for children. The ballet was not as successful as his other stage works when it first appeared, however, now the traditional Christmas ballet is so popular that its annual performance keeps many a ballet company afloat. If all you know of this ballet is the famous suite, by all means hear the entire work.

Source: Wikipedia (https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyotr_Ilyich_Tchaikovsky).

Although originally created for Orchestra, I created this Transcription of the "Dance of the Reed Pipes" from the Nutcracker Suite (Opus 71a Mvt. 7) for Small Orchestra (Flutes, Oboes, Bb Clarinets, English Horns, Bass Clarinets, Bassoons, Bb Trumpets, French Horns, Trombones, Tuba, Cymbols, Timpani, Violins, Violas, Cellos & Bass).

"Gute Nacht, o Wesen" (BWV 227 No. 9) for Double-Reed Quartet

4 parts4 pages04:054 years ago801 views
Oboe(2), English Horn, Bassoon
"Jesu, meine Freude" ("Jesus, My Joy") is a motet composed by Johann Sebastian Bach. The work, which takes its title from the chorale by Johann Franck on which it is based, is also known as Motet No. 3 in E minor, BWV 227. The stanzas of the chorale are interspersed with passages from the Epistle to the Romans.

Bach's organ piece, chorale prelude BWV 610, bears the same title. This work, which is earlier and shorter than the motet, is based on the same chorale melody by Johann Crüger. There are six authenticated funeral motets (BWV 225--230) written for St Thomas's Church, Leipzig, between 1723 and 1727.

To Bach's contemporaries "motet" meant a simple vocal work without independent instrumental parts (though instruments sometimes doubled the voices). Motets often began the Sunday service, and were typically sung by inexperienced singers. In a 1730 memo to the Leipzig town council, Bach mentioned boys in his school who were "motet singers, who need further training in order to be used eventually for figured music," by which he meant the more elaborate and demanding music of the cantatas. But Bach's own motets, like all his music, are quite demanding, and he likely did not use them in church services. It is not clear exactly what their purpose was. One of them is known to have been sung at a prominent person's funeral, but theories about specific occasions for his other motets, including Jesu, meine Freude, have not held up over the years.

Most 18th-century Lutheran church music is based on hymns, called "chorales," that dated from the previous two centuries and were familiar to everyone. In Jesu, meine Freude, the odd-numbered movements are settings of verses of Johann Franck's 1653 chorale of the same name, while the even-numbered movements set excerpts of Paul's Epistle to the Romans. The eleven movements have an overarching symmetry, much of it not apparent, or important, to the listener, though it's worth noting that the first and last movements are identical harmonizations of the chorale, the second and tenth movements work with the same musical material, the central sixth movement is an elaborate fugue, and Bach reduces the texture to three voices in the fourth and eighth movements.

Although "Gute Nacht, o Wesen" ("Good night, existence") was originally written for Chorus (SATB), I created this arrangement for Double-Reed Quartet (2 Oboes, English Horn & Bassoon).

"Agnus Dei" from the Mass in B Minor (BWV 232 No. 25) for Double-Reed Trio

3 parts2 pages03:032 years ago801 views
Oboe, English Horn, Bassoon
The Mass in B minor (BWV 232) by Johann Sebastian Bach is a musical setting of the complete Ordinary of the Latin Mass. The work was one of Bach's last compositions, not completed until 1749, the year before his death. Much of the Mass gave new form to vocal music that Bach had composed throughout his career, dating back (in the case of the "Crucifixus") to 1714, but extensively revised. To complete the work, in the late 1740s Bach composed new sections of the Credo such as "Et incarnatus est".

It was unusual for composers working in the Lutheran tradition to compose a Missa tota and Bach's motivations remain a matter of scholarly debate. The Mass was never performed in its entirety during Bach's lifetime; the first documented complete performance took place in 1859. Since the nineteenth century it has been widely hailed as one of the greatest compositions in musical history, and today it is frequently performed and recorded. Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach archived this work as the Great Catholic Mass.

On 1 February 1733, Augustus II Strong, Polish King, Grand Duke of Lithuania and Elector of Saxony, died. Five months of mourning followed, during which all public music-making was suspended. Bach used the opportunity to work on the composition of a Missa, a portion of the liturgy sung in Latin and common to both the Lutheran and Roman Catholic rites. His aim was to dedicate the work to the new sovereign Augustus III, a Catholic, with the hope of obtaining the title "Electoral Saxon Court Composer”. Upon its completion, Bach visited Augustus III and presented him with a copy of the Missa, together with a petition to be given a court title, dated July 27, 1733; in the accompanying inscription on the wrapper of the mass he complains that he had "innocently suffered one injury or another” in Leipzig. The petition did not meet with immediate success, but Bach eventually got his title: he was made court composer to Augustus III in 1736.

In the last years of his life, Bach expanded the Missa into a complete setting of the Latin Ordinary. It is not known what prompted this creative effort. Wolfgang Osthoff and other scholars have suggested that Bach intended the completed Mass in B minor for performance at the dedication of the new Hofkirche in Dresden, which was begun in 1738 and was nearing completion by the late 1740s. However, the building was not completed until 1751, and Bach's death in July, 1750 prevented his Mass from being submitted for use at the dedication. Instead, Johann Adolph Hasse's Mass in D minor was performed, a work with many similarities to Bach's Mass (the Credo movements in both works feature chant over a walking bass line, for example). Other explanations are less event-specific, involving Bach's interest in 'encyclopedic' projects (like The Art of Fugue) that display a wide range of styles, and Bach's desire to preserve some of his best vocal music in a format with wider potential future use than the church cantatas they originated in.

The piece is orchestrated for two flutes, two oboes d'amore, one natural horn (in D), three natural trumpets (in D), timpani, violins I and II, violas and basso continuo (cellos, basses, bassoons, organ and harpsichord).

Source: Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mass_in_B_minor).

I created this arrangement of the "Agnus Dai" (Lamb of God) for Double-Reed Trio (Oboe, English Horn & Bassoon).

"Blind Mary" for Oboe, English Horn & Harp

3 parts4 pages02:175 years ago790 views
Oboe, English Horn, Harp
Turlough O'Carolan, (Irish: Toirdhealbhach Ó Cearbhalláin) (1670–1738) was a blind early Irish harper, composer and singer whose great fame is due to his gift for melodic composition. When he was eighteen, he caught small pox, a disease which was usually fatal at the time. His life was spared, but he was left permanently blind. Turlough's blindness, in a way, was a blessing because it awakened in him a hidden gift for music. A local noble woman by the name of Mary Fitzgerald McDermott Rowe saw to it that he was trained in the Irish harp, gave him a horse and guide and sent him on his way.

At first, he was not considered a great musician. (The ancient bards were supposed to have started their training when they were still young children and Carolan didn't start until he was an adult.) One of his first patrons, a Squire Reynolds, suggested that he try his hand at composition. His first work, "Si Beag, Si Mor", resulted from this suggestion. After he finished the composition, his fame was spread throughout all of Ireland and he started his career.

The way Carolan made his living, was to travel from big house to big house, from castle to castle, entertaining the households and the friends of some of the most famous and wealthy people of Ireland at the time. Often, as a special favor, he would write a tune in honor of the man of the house, or his wife or daughter. He called his lively tunes in honor of people "Planxties". He was very successful and people would often delay weddings and funerals until he could be present to play the appropriate tune.

When Carolan was a very young man, before his blindness, he met and fell in love with a young woman named Bridget Cruise. Bridget was part of a noble family and Carolan's family was of skilled laborers, so a match could never be made. And even though he went on to live a very successful life, he never forgot Bridget and wrote 4 tunes in her honor. He met her again near the end of his life, when he was on his way to a religious retreat in County Donegal. He happened to touch a woman's hand and instantly recognized that it was hers.

Carolan was also famous for his love of drink, especially Irish whiskey. He wrote a tune in honor of whiskey. As he was dying, he called for one last cup of his favorite brew. His dying words were said to be "the drink and I have been friends for so long, it would be a pity for me to leave without one last kiss." And he died.


Although this work was originally written for Celtic Harp, I created this arrangement for Oboe, English Horn and Concert (Pedal) Harp.

Chorus: "Kommt, ihr Töchter, helft mir klagen" (BWV 244 No. 1) for Winds & Strings

14 parts30 pages07:572 years ago704 views
Flute(2), Oboe(2), Clarinet(2), English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon, Violin(2), Viola, Cello, Contrabass
The St. Matthew Passion (also frequently but incorrectly referred to as St. Matthew's Passion; German: Matthäus-Passion), BWV 244 is a Passion, a sacred oratorio written by Johann Sebastian Bach in 1727 for solo voices, double choir and double orchestra, with libretto by Picander (Christian Friedrich Henrici). It sets chapters 26 and 27 of the Gospel of Matthew (in the German translation of Martin Luther) to music, with interspersed chorales and arias. It is widely regarded as one of the masterpieces of classical sacred music. The original Latin title Passio Domini nostri J.C. secundum Evangelistam Matthæum translates to "The Passion of our Lord J[esus] C[hrist] according to the Evangelist Matthew" Bach did not number the sections of the St Matthew Passion, all of them vocal movements, but twentieth-century scholars have done so. The two main schemes in use today are the scheme from the Neue Bach-Ausgabe (NBA, New Bach Edition) which uses a 1 through 68 numbering system, and the older Bach-Werke-Verzeichnis (BWV, Bach Works Catalog) scheme which divides the work into 78 numbers. Both use lettered subsections in some cases.

Many composers wrote musical settings of the Passion in the late 17th century. Like other Baroque oratorio passions, Bach's setting presents the Biblical text of Matthew 26–27 in a relatively simple way, primarily using recitative, while aria and arioso movements set newly written poetic texts which comment on the various events in the Biblical narrative and present the characters' states of mind in a lyrical, monologue-like manner.

The St Matthew Passion is set for two choirs and two orchestras. Both include two transverse flutes (Choir 1 also includes 2 recorders for No. 19), two oboes, in certain movements instead oboe d'amore or oboe da caccia, two violins, viola, viola da gamba, and basso continuo. For practical reasons the continuo organ is often shared and played with both orchestras. In many arias a solo instrument or more create a specific mood, such as the central soprano aria No. 49, "Aus Liebe will mein Heiland sterben", where the absence of strings and basso continuo mark a desperate loss of security.

The Passion was written for two choruses and orchestras. Choir I consists of a soprano in ripieno voice, a soprano solo, an alto solo, a tenor solo, SATB chorus, two traversos, two oboes, two oboes d'amore, two oboes da caccia, lute, strings (two violin sections, violas and cellos), and continuo (at least organ). Choir II consists of SATB voices, violin I, violin II, viola, viola da gamba, cello, two traversos, two oboes (d'amore) and possibly continuo.

Source: Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Matthew_Passion.).

For those interested in learning about what is arguably greatest chorus ever written (or to hear a more traditional interpretation) might be interested in the rendition and programme notes from Bernard Greenberg: https://musescore.com/user/1831606/scores/812951

I created this arrangement of the Chorus: "Kommt, ihr Töchter, helft mir klagen" (Come, ye daughters, help me lament) for Winds (2 Flutes, 2 Oboes, 2 Bb Clarinets, English Horn, French Horn & Bassoon) & Strings (2 Violins, Viola, Cello & Bass).

"Qui Sedes ad Dexteram Patris" from the Mass in B Minor (BWV 232 No. 10) for Wind Sextet

6 parts9 pages03:385 years ago698 views
Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn, Bassoon
The Mass in B minor (BWV 232) by Johann Sebastian Bach is a musical setting of the complete Ordinary of the Latin Mass. The work was one of Bach's last compositions, not completed until 1749, the year before his death. Much of the Mass gave new form to vocal music that Bach had composed throughout his career, dating back (in the case of the "Crucifixus") to 1714, but extensively revised. To complete the work, in the late 1740s Bach composed new sections of the Credo such as "Et incarnatus est".

It was unusual for composers working in the Lutheran tradition to compose a Missa tota and Bach's motivations remain a matter of scholarly debate. The Mass was never performed in its entirety during Bach's lifetime; the first documented complete performance took place in 1859. Since the nineteenth century it has been widely hailed as one of the greatest compositions in musical history, and today it is frequently performed and recorded. Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach archived this work as the Great Catholic Mass.

On 1 February 1733, Augustus II Strong, Polish King, Grand Duke of Lithuania and Elector of Saxony, died. Five months of mourning followed, during which all public music-making was suspended. Bach used the opportunity to work on the composition of a Missa, a portion of the liturgy sung in Latin and common to both the Lutheran and Roman Catholic rites. His aim was to dedicate the work to the new sovereign Augustus III, a Catholic, with the hope of obtaining the title "Electoral Saxon Court Composer”. Upon its completion, Bach visited Augustus III and presented him with a copy of the Missa, together with a petition to be given a court title, dated July 27, 1733; in the accompanying inscription on the wrapper of the mass he complains that he had "innocently suffered one injury or another” in Leipzig. The petition did not meet with immediate success, but Bach eventually got his title: he was made court composer to Augustus III in 1736.

In the last years of his life, Bach expanded the Missa into a complete setting of the Latin Ordinary. It is not known what prompted this creative effort. Wolfgang Osthoff and other scholars have suggested that Bach intended the completed Mass in B minor for performance at the dedication of the new Hofkirche in Dresden, which was begun in 1738 and was nearing completion by the late 1740s. However, the building was not completed until 1751, and Bach's death in July, 1750 prevented his Mass from being submitted for use at the dedication. Instead, Johann Adolph Hasse's Mass in D minor was performed, a work with many similarities to Bach's Mass (the Credo movements in both works feature chant over a walking bass line, for example). Other explanations are less event-specific, involving Bach's interest in 'encyclopedic' projects (like The Art of Fugue) that display a wide range of styles, and Bach's desire to preserve some of his best vocal music in a format with wider potential future use than the church cantatas they originated in.

The piece is orchestrated for two flutes, two oboes d'amore, one natural horn (in D), three natural trumpets (in D), timpani, violins I and II, violas and basso continuo (cellos, basses, bassoons, organ and harpsichord).

Source: Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mass_in_B_minor).

I created this arrangement of the "Qui Sedes ad Dexteram Patris" (The Seat at the right hand of the Father) for Wind Sextet (Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet, English Horn, French Horn & Bassoon).