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TOCCATA (fanfare) from L'ORFEO by Monteverdi - brass ensemble with opt. percussion - score, parts - medium

Digital Sheet Music

By Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)

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Brass Choir or Ensemble - Digital Download
Composed by Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643). Arranged by Brian Harris. Renaissance, Repertoire. Score, Set of Parts. 9 pages. Published by Publications (S0.251889).

Item Number: S0.251889

This is a literal transcription of the rousing fanfare that opens the famous 1607 Italian opera by Claudio Monteverdi.

L'Orfeo is one of the earliest extant manuscripts to specify an exact instrumentation. This wonderful fanfare was originally written for 5 valve-less trumpets to signal the start of the opera.  The flexible instrumentation of this transcription for Brass Ensemble is playable with optional percussion. A great historic work for teaching and enjoying Renaissance music.

The score gives historic notes regarding the composer, a synopsis of the opera, and performance suggestions. 

SAMPLE: You can view a non-printable PDF of the score and parts at .  

Note: this work is also available arranged for full concert band - great concert opener!

  • Can be used for Solo & Ensemble festival
  • Impressive for opening a concert (consider an antiphonal performance)
  • Lowest two (four) voices simply drone whole notes (can use less-mature players; see score sample above)
  • Use of percussion part is optional
  • Conductor score contains historical performance information and a complete synopsis of the opera

  • Rhythmically-rich parts for top three voices
  • First trumpets tend to rush the dotted-eighth/sixteenth figure (listen to sample recording!)

  • KEY and RANGES:
  • B-flat major
  • Trumpet 1 frequently to G at top of staff; plays one A above that. All other parts are within easy range demands.

  • Originally set for five like-instruments (similar to today's trumpets), this setting is for 2 Trumpets and 1 Horn or Trombone and 2 low brass instruments playing the open 5th "drone" (which can be two trombones/euphoniums/horns or can be expanded with tubas. All parts can be doubled. 

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    COMPOSER: Now retired, Brian Harris holds the Ph.D. in Music Education from the Florida State University and was a band director for over 30 years at public school and college levels. Many of his works are available from and through Sheet Music Plus digital downloads.


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