Al Fresco

From Wind Repertory Project
Karel Husa

Karel Husa

General Info

Year: 1975
Duration: c. 11:40
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Associated Music Publishers, Inc.
Cost: Score and Parts - $70.00   |   Score Only: $20.00


Full Score
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
Contrabassoon (doubling String Bass)
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet (doubling B-flat Bass Saxophone)
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone I-II
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
Bass Saxophone (doubling B-flat Contrabass Clarinet)
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Euphonium I-II
String Bass (3-4 players preferred, doubling Contrabassoon)
Percussion I-II-III-IV, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals (2 large)
  • Glockenspiel (2)
  • Gong (or Tam-Tam)
  • Marimba
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal (2: large and small)
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


See: Topolewski in Resources, below.

Program Notes

Al Fresco has its roots in Karel Husa’s 1947 orchestral work, Three Fresques for Orchestra, Op. 7. Because the first movement was driven by extensive wind writing, Husa found the perfect opportunity to reimagine the music for wind band upon receiving a commission to compose a work for the Ithaca College Concert Band. Fittingly, this keystone work was the first of the heralded Walter Beeler Memorial Commissions. The first performance was given by the Ithaca College Concert Band (Edward Gobrecht, director) at the MENC Convention in Philadelphia on April 19, 1975, with the composer as guest conductor.

Al Fresco has no programmatic content. However, the title indicates my admiration for the art of painting, especially mural painting on wet plaster. And I have always been greatly moved by the forceful, even grandiose and rough, mysterious pictures dealing with primitive life, war, and pageantry.

- Program Note by composer



State Ratings

  • Arkansas: VI
  • Florida: VI --- (The Florida Bandmasters Association denotes this as "significant literature.")
  • New York: VI
  • South Carolina: VI
  • Texas: V


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Indianapolis (Ind.) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Jon S. Noworyta, conductor) - 26 March 2023
  • University of Delaware (Newark) Wind Ensemble (Lauren Reynolds, conductor) – 19 July 2022 WASBE Conference (Prague, Czech Republic)
  • Oklahoma City (Okla.) University Wind Philharmonic (Jack Malm, conductor) - 12 April 2022
  • Luther College (Decorah, Iowa) Concert Band (Cory Near, conductor) - 8 April 2022
  • University of North Texas (Denton) Wind Symphony (Amy Woody, conductor) – 17 February 2022
  • State University of New York, Potsdam, Symphonic Band (Brian K. Doyle, conductor) – 3 March 2020
  • University of Oregon (Eugene) Wind Symphony (Jason Silveira, conductor) – 7 March 2019
  • Eastman School of Music (Rochester, N.Y.) Wind Orchestra (William Talley, conductor) – 30 November 2018
  • Ball State University (Muncie, Ind.) Symphony Band (Austin Hinkle, conductor) – 26 October 2018
  • Kenyon College (Gambier, Ohio) Wind Ensemble (Dane Heuchemer, conductor) - 8 April 2018
  • University of Texas (Austin) Wind Ensemble (Jerry Junkin, conductor) – 23 March 2018
  • State University of New York, Fredonia, Concert Band (Ray Stewart, conductor) – 7 March 2018
  • University of Cincinnati (Ohio) College-Conservatory of Music Wind Ensemble (Kevin Holzman, conductor) – 2 November 2017
  • College-Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati Wind Ensemble (Kevin Michael Holzman-conductor)—2 November, 2017
  • University of Nevada, Reno, Wind Ensemble (R. Reed Chamberlin, conductor) - 21 April 2017 (2017 San Joaquin Valley (Calif.) Concert Band Invitational)
  • University of North Texas (Denton) Concert Band (Jacqueline Townsend, conductor) – 12 April 2017
  • University of Minnesota (Minneapolis) Symphonic Band (Jerry Luckhardt, conductor) – 8 March 2017
  • Ouachita Baptist University (Arkadelphia, Ark.) Wind Ensemble (Craig V. Hamilton, conductor) – 7 March 2017
  • University of Nebraska (Lincoln) Symphonic Band (Anthony Falcone, conductor) – 7 March 2017
  • Seattle Pacific University Wind Ensemble (Danny Helseth, conductor) - 24 February 2017
  • Ithaca (N.Y.) College Concert Band (Brian Diller, conductor) – 1 December 2016

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Fullmer, David. (2003). "Karel Husa." In: A Composer's Insight, Volume 1. Galesville, Md.: Meredith Music Publications. pp. 71–95.
  • Hinkle, Austin C. "Karel Husa: biography, compositional techniques, and analysis of Al Fresco (1974)." 2019. Ball State University, M.M. thesis.
  • Miles, Richard, compiler and editor. (2002). Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 2. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 386–390.
  • Topolewski, Timothy. Errata Studies for the Wind Band Conductor, Vol. 1. Topolewski, 1990.