Characteristic Dances from "The Nutcracker Suite"

From Wind Repertory Project
Peter I Tchaikovsky

Peter I Tchaikovsky (trans. Rogan; rev. and ed. Clark McAlister and Alfred Reed)

The actual title of this work is Suite from 'The Nutcracker:' II. Characteristic Dances

General Info

Year: 1892 / 2001
Duration: c. 15:00
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Master Publications
Cost: Score and Parts - $110.00   |   Score Only - $20.00


Full Score
Flute I-II-III (III doubling C Piccolo)
Oboe I-II (II doubling English Horn)
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Cornet I-II
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion, including:

  • Bells
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine


  • Euphonium B.C., March: m.37: The second 8th note should be an A natural, not A flat.

Program Notes

The second movement from Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker contains some of the most colorful and familiar themes from the beloved ballet, including March; Dance of the Sugarplum Fairy; Russian Dance (Trepak); Arabian Dance; Chinese Dance and Dance of the Toy Flutes.

- Program Note from publisher

Tchaikovsky made a selection of eight of the numbers from the ballet before the ballet's December 1892 première, forming The Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a, intended for concert performance. The suite was first performed, under the composer's direction, on 19 March 1892 at an assembly of the St. Petersburg branch of the Musical Society. The suite became instantly popular, with almost every number encored at its premiere, while the complete ballet did not begin to achieve its great popularity until after the George Balanchine staging became a hit in New York City. The suite became very popular on the concert stage, and was featured in Disney's Fantasia. The Nutcracker Suite should not be mistaken for the complete ballet. The outline below represents the selection and sequence of the Nutcracker Suite culled by the composer.

I. Miniature Overture
II. Danses caractéristiques

  • a. Marche
  • b. Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy [ending altered from ballet-version]
  • c. Russian Dance (Trepak)
  • d. Arabian Dance
  • e. Chinese Dance
  • f. Reed Flutes

III. Waltz of the Flowers


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • New England Conservatory (Boston, Mass.) Symphonic Winds (William Drury, conductor) - 12 December 2022
  • Whitehouse Wind Symphony (Somerville, N.J.) (James P. Sheeley, Jr., conductor) – 8 December 2019
  • San Luis Obispo (Calif.) Wind Orchestra (Jennifer Martin, conductor) – 17 December 2017
  • Walnut Creek (Calif.) Concert Band (Harvey Benstein, conductor) – 28 November 2017
  • Vienna (VA) Community Band {Cornelius A. Young, conductor) – 11 December 2016
  • Encore Concert Band (Mokena, Ill.) (Bill Schuetter, conductor) – 14 December 2014
  • Lesbian & Gay Big Apple Corps Symphonic Band (New York City) (Kelly Watkins, conductor) – 12 December 2014

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