Bells for Stokowski

From Wind Repertory Project
Michael Daugherty

Michael Daugherty (transcribed by the composer)

This work is the third movement of Daugherty's "Philadelphia Stories."

General Info

Year: 2001
Duration: 13:50
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Orchestra
Publisher: Peer Music Ltd.
Cost: Score and Parts - Rental   |   Score Only - $40.00


Full Score
Piccolo (doubling Flute IV)
Oboes I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III-IV
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Saxophone
E-flat Alto Saxophone
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat or C Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II
Bass Trombone
Harp (2)
String Bass (2)
Pipe Organ
Percussion (4 players), including:

  • Bass Drum (large)
  • Bell Plate (small and medium)
  • Bell Tree
  • Chimes
  • Crash Cymbals (medium and large)
  • Crotales (2)
  • Glockenspiel
  • Marimba
  • Mark Tree
  • Sleigh Bells (large)
  • Tam-Tam (medium and large)
  • Vibraphone

Guitar (optional)


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Bells for Stokowski was commissioned by the Philadelphia Orchestra and musical director Wolfgang Sawallisch in celebration of their centennial. It was commissioned with help from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Philadelphia Music Project (funded by Pew Charitable Trusts). It was given its world premiere by the Philadelphia Orchestra, David Zinman conducting, at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia on 15 November 2001. “Bells” is originally the third movement of Philadelphia Stories, Daugherty’s third symphony. The other two movements are Sundown on South Street and Tell-Tale Harp. Each of the movements can be performed independently.

At the behest of a consortium of commissioners which included the University of Michigan (Michael Haithcock), Arizona State University (Gary Hill), Baylor University (Kevin Sedatole), the University of Colorado (Allan McMurray), Ithaca College (Steve Peterson), Louisiana State University (Frank Wickes), Michigan State University (John Whitwell), Riverside Community College (Kevin Mayse), the University of Tennessee (Gary Sousa), the University of Texas (Jerry Junkin), Texas Tech University (J. Cody Birdwell), and the University of Washington (Tim Salzman), Daugherty transcribed the work for symphonic band.

Daugherty states:

Bells for Stokowski is a tribute to one of the most influential and controversial conductors of the 20th century. Born in London, Leopold Stokowski (1882-1977) began his career as an organist. Moving to America, Stokowski was fired from his organ post at St. Bartholomew's Church in New York in 1908, after he concluded a service with Stars and Stripes Forever. As maestro of the Philadelphia Orchestra (1912-36) he became known for his brilliant interpretations of classical music, his enthusiasm for new concert music, and for taking risks by constantly pushing the envelope of what was acceptable in the concert hall.

In Bells for Stokowski I imagine Stokowski in Philadelphia visiting the Liberty Bell at sunrise, and listening to all the bells of the city resonate.

To create various bell effects, I frame the ensemble with two percussionists positioned stereophonically on the stage performing on identical ringing percussion instruments such as tubular bells, crotales, bell trees, and various non-pitched metals. I also echo Stokowski's musical vision and legacy in order to look to the past and the future of American orchestral concert music. To represent the past I've composed an original theme in the style of Bach. Midway in the composition, there is also brief fantasy where we hear a Daugherty orchestral transcription of a portion of Bach's C Major Prelude from The Well Tempered Klavier introduced by two stereophonic harps. To represent the future I take my original theme composed in the style of Bach and process it through my own musical language in a series of tonal and atonal variations. During the variations I employ complex musical canons, polyrhythms, counterpoints, and move at will between various musical idioms, resonating Stokowski's enthusiasm for music of all styles and cultures. In the last chords of Bells for Stokowski we hear the final echoes of a long legacy of great orchestral performances in Philadelphia at the Academy of Music.

- Program Note by Nikk Pilato


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Miami (Fla.) Frost Wind Ensemble (Robert Carnachan, conductor) - 10 September 2023
  • Hebron High School (Carrollton, Tx.) Wind Symphony (Andy Sealy, conductor) — 19 April 2023
  • Virginia Tech (Blacksburg) Wind Ensemble (Derek Shapiro, conductor) - 23 February 2023
  • Las Vegas Academy (Nev.) Wind Ensemble (John Seaton, Conductor) - 12 March 2022
  • Purdue University Fort Wayne (Ind.) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Daniel Tembras, conductor) - 3 March 2022
  • University of South Florida (Tampa) Symphonic Band (John Carmichael, conductor) – 25 February 2020
  • Central Washington University (Ellensburg) Wind Ensemble (Lewis Norfleet, conductor) – 14 February 2020 (2020 WMEA Conference)
  • University of Northern Colorado (Greeley) Wind Ensemble (Wesley J. Broadnax, conductor) – 13 February 2020
  • McGill University (Montreal, Que., Can.) Wind Orchestra (Alain Cazes, conductor) – 1 November 2019
  • University of North Texas (Denton) Wind Orchestra (Andrew Trachsel, conductor) – 31 October 2019
  • Ithaca (N.Y.) College Wind Ensemble (Christopher Hughes, conductor) – 15 October 2019
  • California State University, Fullerton, Wind Symphony (Dustin Barr, conductor) – 6 October 2019
  • University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) Symphony Band (Michael Haithcock, conductor) – 27 September
  • University of Kansas (Lawrence) Wind Ensemble (Brett Keating, conductor) – 30 April 2019
  • James Madison University (Harrisonburg, Va.) Wind Symphony (Stephen Bolstad, conductor) – 23 February 2019
  • Oklahoma State University (Stillwater) Wind Ensemble (Joseph Missal, conductor) – 12 February 2019
  • Kennesaw (Ga.) State University Wind Ensemble (David T. Kehler, conductor) – 7 February 2019
  • University of Manitoba (Winnipeg, Man., Can.) Wind Ensemble (Jacquie Dawson, conductor) - December 7, 2018
  • Charles River Wind Ensemble (Boston, Mass.) (Matthew M. Marsit, conductor) – 18 November 2018
  • Indiana University (Bloomington) Wind Ensemble (Rodney C. Dorsey, conductor) – 13 November 2018

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works