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First Suite in F

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Thom Ritter George

Thom Ritter George (ed. R Mark Rogers)

Subtitle: Four Movements Reflecting Life at Sea

General Info

Year: 1975 / 1998
Duration: c. 12:15
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Southern Music Company
Cost: Score and Parts - $150.00   |   Score Only - $25.00


1. Sea Chanty - 2:30
2. Song of the Bells
3. Country Dance - 1:40
4. Rumba, Rumba - 3:05


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

  • Bass Drum
  • Chimes
  • Claves
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Gourds
  • Maraca
  • Snare Drum
  • Tambourine
  • Temple Blocks
  • Triangle
  • Wood Block
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

First Suite in F was written for the fiftieth anniversary of the United States Navy Band, and the premiere was in the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, conducted by Lieutenant Commander Ned Muffley.

The composer writes:

As you might expect, the musical ideas contain allusions to the Navy and the music-making of the Navy Band. The first movement, Sea Chantey, is not based on any particular sea chantey. Rather, it catches the flavor of the genre -- confident, humorous, and upbeat. The various sea motives are used in a contrapuntal manner, climbing over one another to see which can ‘outdo’ the other. The second movement, Song of the Bells, is wistful in character, perhaps symbolizing the loneliness and grandeur of the sea. On purpose, I reserved the bell (chime) tones for the ending. The third movement, Country Dance, serves as an intermezzo. It has a simple, melodious, and natural character. The final movement, Rumba Rumba, shows Navy men having fun in a South American port. Here auxiliary South American percussion instruments are used to add to the local flavor.

- Program Note from Baylor University Concert Band concert program, 2 May 2021


(Needed - please join the WRP if you can help.)

State Ratings

  • Alabama: Class A
  • Florida: V
  • Georgia: VI
  • Louisiana: III
  • North Carolina: VI
  • South Carolina: VI
  • Tennessee: VI
  • Virginia: VI


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Baylor University (Waco, Tx.) Concert Band (Steve Dailey, conductor) - 2 May 2021
  • Central DeWitt (Iowa) High School Symphonic Band (Josh Greubel, conductor) – 9 March 2020
  • Lansing (Mich.) Concert Band (Dan Alt, conductor) – 21 October 2018
  • Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, Ohio) Symphonic Winds (Ryan Scherber, conductor) – 14 October 2018
  • Cincinnati Youth Wind Ensemble (Ann Porter, conductor) – 23 October 2016
  • Illinois State (Normal) University University Band (Gavin Smith, conductor) – 13 November 2015
  • California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, Wind Orchestra (Christopher J. Woodruff, conductor) - 4 June 2011

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • George, T.; Rogers, M. (1998). First Suite in F : For Symphonic Band : CN 285 (1975) [score]. Southern Music Co.: San Antonio, Tex.
  • Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music. "Thom Ritter George." Accessed 11 November 2015
  • Miles, Richard B. 2000. Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 3. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 344-351.