Fanfares and Arias

Steven Stucky

Rental
Publisher: Merion Music, Inc.
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

"Fanfares and Arias" for wind ensemble is arranged as an alternating series of fast sections (the ?fanfares?) and slow sections (the ?arias?), in which all the business of making a musical work coherent?beginning and ending clearly, for example, or signalling where we are in the ?story??is carried out by the fanfares, while all the expressive, emotional freight is borne by the arias.

The first of the fanfares (Vivo) sets the tone for all three: bright, insistent, rhythmically quirky, and liable to change course suddenly, without warning. The first aria section (Largo), too, arrives suddenly, as if, turning a corner, we enter an unexpected world: atmospheric, poetic, and lyrical. The first aria gradually gives way to the second fanfare, overlapping in such a way that (unlike the sudden juxtapositions early in the piece) it is difficult to say exactly where the slow tempo ends and the fast begins. The scherzo-like second fanfare (Allegro) uses the same material as the first and, like it, is prone to Stravinskyan rhythms and sudden shifts of mood, but now the tone is light and even playful.

The second aria (Largo) recasts the material of its earlier counterpart but now in a richer harmonic idiom; like the first aria, it remains a fragment, denied a thorough development or a conventional close. The arrival of the third and final fanfare (Vivo), which consists mostly of literal reprise of material from the first fanfare, overlaps the end of the second aria in such a way that for a moment both tempos?very slow and very fast?exist simultaneously.

The work was commissioned by what was at that time called the Big Eight Band Directors Association. It was completed on September 28, 1994, and first performed by the University of Colorado Wind Ensemble, conducted by Allan McMurray, during the national conference of the College Band Directors National Association in Boulder on February 22, 1995.

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Additional Information

Commission Commissioned by the Big Eight Band Directors' Association.
Composition Date 1994
Duration 00:17:00
Orchestration 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 5(EbCl./B.Cl) 3(Cbsn.) - 4 3 3 1 2Euph.; 5Perc. Cb.
Premiere 22nd February, 1995. University of Colorado Wind Ensemble, conducted by Allan McMurray, University of Colorado at Boulder.

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