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Songs of the Warrior

By Craig Wadley

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Brass Quintet - Advanced - Digital Download
Composed by Craig Wadley. 20th Century, Modern, Recital. Score, Set of Parts. 52 pages. Published by Wadley Publications (S0.208899).

Item Number: S0.208899

This Brass Quintet won the 1996 Fine Arts Festival Music Awardat Illinois State University, an international competition.

 

Songs of theWarrior, a Brass Quintet in three movements, utilizes thematic material derivedfrom a twelve-tone row, presented in three contrasting styles.  While the piece stands on its own as absolutemusic following traditional formal structures, the titles of each movement dosuggest a setting befitting the mood or atmosphere evoked by the music.

 

I. The Cannon’s Mouth

Following a slightly modified version of the classicalsonata allegro form, this movement presents the thematic material in a freelyatonal setting, Much use is made of variations of ancient two note war-horncalls, which would command soldiers to advance into direct combat with anenemy.

 

II.  Amidst the Fallen

The second movement evokes images of the aftermath of battleand the horrors left on the field of war. Dynamic and rhythmic elements in the music produce a classic archform.  Melodic and harmonic structuresare developed throughout the movement.

 

III.  Revelry

A complete departure in style from the previous movements, Revelry features upbeat modal harmonyand foot-tapping rhythms.  Thematicmaterial borrowed from the earlier movements is transformed to conform to thedesired atmosphere.  The form of themovement is best described as a hybrid rondo and variations.  The light-hearted mood is perhaps areflection of the joy found when a soldier returns to his home.

 

This quintet presents three stylistically distinctmovements, yet all are based on the same thematic sources.  The first movement is somewhat cerebral anddemands much virtuosity from the performers. The second is darker, with some almost lyrical melodic lines.  The final movement is nothing if notbombastic.  All-in-all, Songs of the Warrior provides a littlesomething for everyone, from Berlioz to Schoenberg, with a little Bernstein onthe side.

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