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Crown Imperial

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William Walton

William Walton (arr. William James Duthoit)


Subtitle: A Coronation March, 1937


General Info

Year: 1937
Duration: c. 10:00
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Boosey & Hawkes
Cost: Score and Parts - $120.00   |   Score Only - Unknown


Instrumentation

Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II-III
Oboe
Bassoon I-II
Eb Clarinet
Bb Clarinet Solo-I-II-III
Eb Alto Clarinet
Bb Bass Clarinet
Bb Contrabass Clarinet
Alto Saxophone
Tenor Saxophone
Baritone Saxophone
Bass Saxophone
Trumpet (in Bb)
Cornet (in Bb) Solo-I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II
Bass Trombone
Baritone (Bass Clef & Treble Clef)
Basses
String Bass
Harp
Timpani
Percussion I-II-III-IV-V, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Chimes
  • Cymbals (crash and suspended)
  • Field Drum
  • Large Gong
  • Orchestra bells
  • Snare Drum
  • Triangle


Errata

B-flat Tenor Saxophone. 16 meas. after reh. 6: add rehearsal no. 7
B-flat Tenor Saxophone. 17 meas. after reh. 6: delete printed rehearsal no. 7
Drums. 3 meas. after reh. 26, beat 1, top system (snare drum): quarter rest should read eighth rest
Euphonium BC, 2nd bar of 21, first beat rest missing beneath Bass Tromb. cue
Euphonium TC, 15th bar of 24, second quarter note E natural should be D natural

Program Notes

This work was commissioned by the British Broadcasting Corp. for the coronation of King George VI on May 12, 1937. The BBC Orchestra has premiered the work (with many composer recalls) six days earlier. The title is taken from the poem In Honour of the City of London by William Dunbar (1465-1520) and the quotation "In beauty bearing the Crown Imperial," was quoted by Walton at the head of his original score.

The enormous strength and sense of tonality of this brilliant coronation march come from the Tudor choral style which Walton knew so well. The first section has a quietly rhythmic opening which gradually builds to a splendid climax. A broad and stately melody, typically English in its majestic sonority, then provides the contrast to the first section, and the two themes are repeated and varied in the march to the finale.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band


The music begins with a woodwind choir carrying a syncopated, energetic melody, which then grows into a proud and vibrant tune in the brass and recurs throughout the work. Between these recurrences are lyrical sections taken at a more relaxed tempo, to be played in a grandiose and stately manner. The robust melodic themes intend to convey a sense of nationalistic pride that is brought to fruition in the last, and most impactful, minute of the piece. Crown Imperial is a classic march that celebrates a modern era of the British Crown, beginning in the early 20th century.

- Program Notes by Hannah Hadden and Zia Leigh for the Marcus High School Wind Symphony


Crown Imperial was originally composed for the coronation of King Edward VIII. However, Edward abdicated his throne and Crown Imperial was performed at the coronation of King George VI instead. Crown Imperial was also chosen to be performed at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 and as the recessional piece in the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in 2011.

- Program Note from Wikipedia


'In beauty bearing the Crown Imperial.'

(William Dunbar, 1465-1520)

- Program Note from score


Commercial Discography


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


Performances

To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • California State University Bakersfield Concert Band (Leo Sakamoto, conductor) – 23 November 2019
  • Central Michigan University (Mount Pleasant) Wind Symphony (James Batcheller, conductor) – 29 November 2018
  • Northwestern Michigan College (Traverse City) Concert Band (Patricia Brumbaugh, conductor) - 26 October 2018
  • McPherson (Kan.) College Concert Band (Kyle Hopkins, conductor) – 8 May 2018
  • Parkland College (Champaign, Ill.) Concert Band (Larry Stoner, conductor) - 6 May 2018
  • Dallas (Tex.) Winds (Jerry Junkin, conductor) – 17 April 2018
  • New England Conservatory (Boston, Mass.) Senior Massachusetts Youth Wind Ensemble (Michael Mucci, conductor) – 18 December 2017
  • San Luis Obispo (Calif.) Wind Orchestra (Jennifer Martin, conductor) – 21 May 2017 
  • San Jose (Calif.) Wind Symphony (Edward C. Harris, conductor) – 5 March 2017
  • West Chester (Penn.) University Wind Symphony (M. Gregory Martin, conductor) – 29 September 2016
  • Kennesaw (Ga.) State University Wind Ensemble (David T. Kehler, conductor) – 18 April 2016
  • Indiana University (Bloomington) Wind Ensemble (Stephen Pratt, conductor) 5 April 2016
  • United States Army Band (Ft. Myer, Va.) (Timothy J. Holtan, conductor) – 6 February 2016
  • Bob Jones University (Greenville, S.C.) Symphonic Wind Band (Dan Turner, conductor) – 10 November 2015
  • Marcus High School (Flower Mound, Tex.) Wind Symphony (Amanda Drinkwater, conductor) - 13 February 2015 (2015 TMEA Conference, San Antonio)
  • Austin Civic Wind Ensemble (Texas) (Gary Sapp, conductor) - 9 November 2014
  • Solano Community Concert Band (Bill Doherty, conductor) - 6 April 2013 (ACB’s 35th Annual Convention (San Ramon, Calif.))
  • Santa Barbara City College Concert Band ( Eric C. Heidner, conductor) - 6 May 2012
  • Category 5 Wind Ensemble, Inc. (Mitchell Davis, conductor) - 1 October 2011
  • Arts Academy Band [Interlochen, Mich.] (Frederick Fennell, conductor) - 2 March 1974


Works for Winds by this Composer


Resources