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Uruguayan National Anthem for Concert/Wind Band (MFAO World National Anthem Series)

Digital Sheet Music

By Francisco José Debali

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Concert Band - Intermediate - Digital Download
Composed by Francisco José Debali. Arranged by Keith Terrett. Romantic Period, Latin, Patriotic. Score, Set of Parts. 73 pages. Published by Music for all Occasions (S0.727091).

Item Number: S0.727091

The "Himno Nacional de Uruguay" (English: "National Anthem of Uruguay"), arranged for Concert/Wind Band, also known by its incipit "Orientales, la Patria o la Tumba" (English: "Easterners, the Country or the Tomb"), is the longest national anthem in terms of duration with 105 bars of musi(about four-and-a-half to six minutes), though an abridged version is performed on most occasions.

Its lyrics are by Francisco Acuña de Figueroa, who was also author of the lyrics to Paraguay's national anthem; "Paraguayos, República o Muerte". The lyrics were officially declared the national anthem on July 8, 1833, while the current musical composition was declared as the official by law on July 25 and 26, in 1848.

After Uruguay’s independence in 1828 without a national anthem, the poet Francisco Esteban Acuña de Figueroa offered to write one for the government, and it was accepted as a draft anthem in 1830 and officially approved by the government three years later. However, like many anthems of the era at the time, it had violent diatribes against Spain (the colonial power over Uruguay) and Portugal and Brazil (Uruguay’s neighbour who annexed the area after a revolt against Spain). The final version debuted in 1845. Acuña de Figueroa’s text had 11 verses, but today only the first verse and the chorus is sung.

The music, typical for a Latin American epic anthem is operatic in nature, reminiscent of works by Italian composers Donizetti, Verdi, Bellini or Rossini, but the music was composed by Francisco José Debali, a Hungarian who had moved to Uruguay in 1838 after having served as a military band master in the Piedmont area of Italy. Acuña de Figueroa’s words were first set to a piece of music by a composer named de Barros, but in 1848 it was set to Debali’s work. The extended grandeur of the music makes it run very long, even though only one verse is performed today; at 105 bars and almost five minutes in length (if the musical introduction is included), Uruguay’s anthem is the longest in the world.

Uruguay, officially the Eastern Republic of Uruguay or the Republic East of the Uruguay (River) (Spanish: República Oriental del Uruguay; pron. IPA [re'puβ̞lika oɾjen'tal del uɾu'ɰwaj]), is a country located in southern South America. It is bordered by Brazil to the north, the Uruguay River to the west, the estuary of the Río de la Plata (literally "River of Silver", but commonly known in English as "River Plate") to the southwest, with Argentina on the other bank of both, and finally the South Atlantic Ocean to the southeast. About half of its people live in the capital and largest city, Montevideo. The nation is the second smallest independent country in South America, larger only than Suriname (it is also larger than French Guiana, which is not independent), and is one of the most politically and economically stable.

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