Wind Lit.

Historical Context

Schoenberg writes Transfigured Night-Verklhert


*1899- "Transfigured Night"-"Verklhert"- one of the earliest programmatic chamber pieces/ chromatic idiom derived from Tristan

Jean Francaix

1912 - 1997

*Studied with Nadia Bouleger/ Wrote "9 Characteristic Pieces" (1970s)/ "A Sept Dances" (1980s)

Schoenberg writes Pierrot Lunaire


*1912- Pierrot Lunaire Op. 21- 21 mvts long- violin, viola, flute, cello, clar., piano, and soprano voice.

Stravinsky writes "L'Histoire du Soldat"


*used popular dance forms/ Vernor Reinhart (clarinetist) commissioned this work/ Russian parable about a soldier who sells his violin to the devil for a book that will predict the economy/ Written for violin, double bass, clarinet, bsn, tpt, tbn, perc, soldier, devil, narrator, dancer.

Schoenberg writes Harmonie Lehre


*1922- Harmonie Lehre- theory book/ Klangfarbonmelodie-->tone color melody- uproots the idea of harmony, melody, and accomp.

Strauss writes Vienna Philharmonic Fanfare


(all brass)

Varese writes "Ionization"

1929 - 1931

*Uses siren and percussion ensemble.

Strauss writes Schweik

1930 - 1940

Silent Woman- Schweik (Jewish librettist)- In a letter to Schweik, he criticized the Nazis. The Nazi's found the letter and Strauss had to stay out of the public for a year.

Strauss appointed president of the Reich's Musik Kammer


Les Six

1935 - 1950

*Honneger, Poulenc, Millhaud, Duray, Tallefare, Auric/ Got named by Collet arbitrarilly.
*Reaction to the "new-ness" of academic music/ These six were influenced by jazz- made music for use and for the people/ Inflections of charm and humor/ Stark contrast to 2nd Viennese school.

Verese writes "Density 21.5"


*for platinum flute

Berlin Olympics


*Jesse Owens won a track event in Hitler's presence.

Gunther Schuller


• Gunther Schueller- 3rd stream jazz = jazz and classical music blended/ Former pres. Of New England conservatory/ Composer, conductor, jazz historian – arranged scott Joplin’s rags.
o Form corresponds to march form (introduction, 2 repeated strains, optional intro to trio (made of 2 rep. strains), optional inserted strain (dog fight), modulates at trio.

Stravinksy writes "Circus Polka"


*Written for Ringling Bros./ Coreographed for elephants/ Quotes Schubert March Militaire.

Strauss writes Fest Musik (der Stadt of Wien)


*wrote for Vienna tpt. choir (12 tpts, 8 tbn, 2 tuba, timpani+percussion/ Divided into 2 antiphonal choirs.

Varese writes "Deserts"


*winds, perc, and electric tape

Berlioz (1803-1869)

-Expirmented with wind music/ During this time- Paris Concervatory is beginning to be prominent- extended technical facitlities for wind instruments/ Jadin, Gossec, and Muhal- other composers writing for military band at this time.

Symphonie Funebree Triomphale, Op. 15

  1. March funebre-ostinato, brief decalmatory statement between 2 ideas
  2. Oraisonfunebre- from an unperformed opera
  3. Apotheose- military band and optional chorus -written for anniversery of July War/Revolution in France. -written for placing of new column on a church.

Wagner (1813-1883)



-Based off of music by Weber, although he didn't like Weber.
-Paid to commemorate Weber's death.

Gounod (1818-1893)

-studied at Paris Conservatory and Rome/ wrote Faust and Romeo and Juliet

Petite Symphonie

  1. I. Adagio et Allegretto
  2. II. Andante Cantabile
  3. III. Scherzo
  4. IV. Finale *originally for 10 instruments/ Changed to be for wind octet + 1 flute/ Written for famous flute player- Tafenal

Strauss (1864-1949)

-Wrote for winds his whole life/ Father was horn player- Franz Strauss/ Extended performance demands of brass and woodwinds.

Serenade, Op. 7


*written before Op.4/ For 13 Winds- octet + 4 hrns. and contrabassoon/ 1 movement, through-composed/ Intended for banquet in Vienna/ Hans von Bulow saw this performance and thought Strauss was suited for writing for winds- this resulted in Suite in Bb, Op.4 (1884)- Features the horn and clarinet, whom he wrote it for.



*Written for 15 tpt., 4 tbn, 4 hrns, 2 tubas, and a timpani/ Sounds like Bruckner/ For Fascist Ball for Knights of St. John.

Symphony for Wind Instruments, “The Happy Workshop”

  1. Allegro con brio
  2. Andantino
  3. Menuet
  4. Einleitung und brio
    • In 1943, Strauss fell ill and wrote Sonatina in F (from an Invalid's Workshop) for double winds+c. clarinet, basset horn, bass cl, contrabassoon and 4 hrn *After Strauss recovered, he wrote this piece/ Dedicated to Mozart/ Quotes Rondo theme from Gran Partita/ For double winds+ c. clarinet, basset horn, bass cl, and contrabassoon + 4 hrns.

Mahler (1860-1911)

-Born in Austria/Hungary/ Lived between a bordello and military base- caused a weird upbringing/ Acted as a bridge between Austrian tradition and contemporary music.

Um Mitternacht


*Wrote a song cycle of poetry with 7 movements- Ruckertlieder/ Each movement is for different instruemenation/ Um Mitternacht is for WINDS, HARP, and PIANO + VOICE.

Ives (1874-1954)

*Father: Goerge Edwards Ives/ Charles learned to think independently – sing in one key and accompany in another key/ Wrote first composition at age 13 – holiday quick step – theater ensemble instrumentation/ By 16, composed 3 marches, 2 survived/ 1894 – went to Yale and studied w/ Horratio Parker (classically trained model)/ Father said “every dissonance doesn’t HAVE to resolve…” / / Wrote Decoration Day, Country Band March, Washington’s Birthday/ TRANSCRIBERS: ELKUS, and SINGLETON

From the Steeples and the Mountains


4 sets of bells, glocks, chimes, trumpets and trombone (bucket of dissonance)
o Rhythmically complex
o Polytonal
o Bells are played in key of C in octaves, Db, and B
o Atonal brass parts
o Final Irony: 3 sets of bells superimpose a plagal cadence in their own key, while the brass sit on a C tonic w/ a top D in the trumpet
o He never hearded this performed – wasn’t even published till 1965
o At the end of the score, he writes “from the steeples, the bells, then the rocks on the mountains begin to shout!”
o Uses 4th interval

Schmitt (1870-1958)

*French composer/ Studied at Paris Conservatory/ Won Prix de Rome @ 19/ Served as music critic for famous paper – Le Temps (the times) – rather controvertial because of his habit of shouting out critics from his seat in the hall/ Wrote symphonies, ballet, sax quartet, wrote Lied and Scherzo for horn and winds – 1910/ Rebelled against impressionism and leaned towards neo-classicism combined w/ rhythmic mentality of Stravinsky.

Dionysiaques, Op. 62


*Written for Garden Republic band/ big wild public party/ Fast section sounds like Pagan ritualism – composed 2 years before Rite of Spring/ Opening theme sounds like Jaws, chromatic wedge @ beginning =contrary chromatic motion (separate directions)/ Written for people coming out of Paris Conservatory.

Schoenberg (1874-1951)

*Born in Vienna/ Age 9-played violin and began composing/ Oscar Hadler taught him harmony/ When he was young he followed Brahms tradition/ Influenced by Zemlinksy- feared dissonance.
*1st period- (1894-1907) Brahmsian/ 2nd period- (1908-1922)- Experimental, free atonality/ 3rd period- (1923-death)- 12 tone

Chamber Symphony, Op. 9a

  1. Langsam
  2. Sehrrasch
  3. Viellangsamer, dochflieBend
  4. Viellangsamer
  5. Etwasbewegter *During his 1st period/ Just before his music became completely 12 tone/ Very chromatic but still tonal/ Each movement has a sonata-allegro, scherzo, and slow section to create unity.

Theme and Variations Op. 43a


*Wrote this 8 years before his death/ Schirmer commissioned it for high school band/ 1st theme=7 measures, Main theme=21 measures long, Tempo=84 (divisible by 7)/ g minor-ish

Joplin (1867-1917)

*Trained in European classical model (teacher was German)/ Born in Texarkana- died of syphillis/ Known for Ragtime – wrote 44 original ragtime pieces, one ballet, 2 operas/ 1976 – awarded Pulitzer Prize/ Traveling musician – black guy = church, bars, brothels, world’s fair in Chicago in the south/ Lived in Missouri, spent time in NY finding producer for his opera.

Ragtime Dance


*Form corresponds to march form (introduction, 2 repeated strains, optional intro to trio (made of 2 rep. strains), optional inserted strain (dog fight), modulates at trio.

Krenek (1900-1991)

*Wrote Dream Sequence (1975)- written for large band- CBDNA commission

Three Merry Marches


*still in a key area, but on the road to antonality.

Weill (1900-1950)

*German-Jewish composer/ Worked with librettist Brecht/ uses guitar, banjo, piano, perc, and winds/ studied with Busoni/ Best known for stage work (Beggar's Opera, Three Penny Opera, and Mahonony)

Threepenny Opera Suite

  1. Overture
  2. Ballad of Mack the Knife
  3. Instead of Song
  4. Ballad of the Easy Life
  5. Polly’s Song
  6. Tango-Ballad
  7. Canon Song
  8. Threepenny Finale

Ruggles (1876-1971)

  • Composer and New England painter/ Only 9 pieces of his exist today.

Angels for Muted Brass


*Revised 1938/ For 4 tpt, 2 tbn./ 47 measures long/ Wrote 200 works transcribed for band but they are all lost.

Poulenc (1899-1963)

Suite Française

  1. Bransle de Bourgogne
  2. Pavane
  3. Petite March Militaire
  4. Complainte
  5. Bransle de Champagne
  6. Sicilienne
  7. Carillon *3 oboes, 3 bassoon, 3 tpt, 3 tbn, and percussion/ Based on French keyboard suites by Guerveise.

Stravinksy (1882-1971)

*known as revolutionary of rhythm/ Studied with Korsakov/ Wrote Firebird, Rite of Spring, Petrushka (after Rite of Spring, he thought he had exhasted the orchestra and looked for other mediums/ Collaborated with Cocteau, Diagelev, Picasso, Ballet Russe, Nijensky/ Robert Craft-friend of Stravinksy (resulted in recording and books)/ Eric Walter White book- main reference on Stravinsky/ Ansermet- famous conductor (conducted many performers of his ballets)/ Came in contact with Ravel and Debussy and was viewed as a French composer by 1927.

Ragtime for Eleven Instruments


*Written for cimbolom+winds/ Uses a lot of syncopation.

Symphonies of Wind Instruments


*Revised in 1947/ Written for Dubussy/ 2 sections-2nd is based on a "Review Musicales" piano piece (chorale)/ Written for 23 winds ( 3 each w.w, 4 hrn, 3 tpt, 3 tbn, tuba)/ Premiered in 1921-Kusaviksy conducted/ Thin scoring (austere ritual.)

Octet for Wind Instruments

  1. Sinfonia
  2. Tema con variazioni
  3. Finale

*Revised in 1950/ 1st true neo-classical piece of Stravinsky by form+orchestration/ Written for fl, clar, 2 bsn, 2 tpt, 3 tbn/ Filled with counterpoint.

Concerto for Piano and Wind Instruments

  1. Largo
  2. Largo
  3. Allegro *Premiered at Paris Opera (Kusavitsky conducted)/ Written for double winds + 3 tbn, 4 hrn, tuba, bass, timp/ Stravinsky played piano at the premiere.

Symphony of Psalms

  1. I. Prelude
  2. II. Double Fugue
  3. III. Allegro *Kusavitksy commissioned this work/ Written for 4 fl, picc, 4 oboe, english horn, 3 bsn, contrabassoon, 4 hrn, 5 tpt, 3 tbn, bass trombone, 2 piano+perc.



*Several different permutations of this work/ Originally for soprano and piano, but transcribed to different ensembles.

Ebony Concerto

  1. I.
  2. II.
  3. III. *Written for Woody Herman Big Band/ Heard jazz in Harlem/ This was him trying his hand at jazz.

Berg (1885-1935)

*Student of Schoenberg/ Known for operas Lulu and Wozzeck/ 1926-Lyric Suite.

Chamber Concerto for Piano, Violin & 13 Wind Instruments

1923 - 1925
  1. Themascherzoso con variazioni- piano + winds
  2. Adagio- pallindrome, Matilda theme- quotes Pelias about unfaithful love
  3. Rondo rhytmico con Introduzione
  4. Wrote Kammer Konzert for Schoenberg's 50th birthday/ Instrumentation- piano, violin + 13 winds- picc, flute, oboe, english horn, Eb clar., clar., bassoon, contrabassoon, 2 hrn, tpt, tbn/ 960 measures (1st mvt- 240, 2nd mvt- 240, 3rd mvt-480) *First notes spell out Schoenberg, Webern, Berg

Varèse (1883-1965)

  • Born in Paris, but spent most of his time in US/ Sought to think about music in different ways/ Began conducting Renaissance choir/ Incoporated all the sounds in his head into his music/ Great emphasis on timbre and rhythm/ Developed "organized sound"/ Spacial music- set sound free (treated all elements of music as its own experience)- compared this to crystalization- music creates form/ Wanted to manipulate all facets of sound.


  1. Assez lent
  2. Trèsvif et nerveux
  3. Grave – Animé et jubilatoire
  4. For 7 wind instruments (flute/picc, clar/eb clar, bsn, hrn, tpt, tbn. + double bass



*For w.w, brass, perc, and siren/ uses 3 note motive to unify mvt./ uses Klangfarbonmelodie/ Uses glissando as melody and most melodies have repeated patterns on the same pitch. (Pointillism)