Flight of the Bumblebee (arr Davis)

From Wind Repertory Project
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (arr. A. Davis)

General Info

Year: 1900 / 1978
Duration: c. 1:25
Difficulty: V (solo)/ III (band) (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Orchestra
Publisher: Ludwig-Masters
Cost: Score and Parts - $55.00   |   Score Only - $10.00


Full Score
Solo Flute
Solo Clarinet
Solo Alto Saxophone
Solo Cornet/Trumpet/Euphonium
Solo Mallet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Saxophone
B-flat Tenor Saxophone/Baritone T.C./Bass Clarinet
E-flat Baritone Saxophone/Alto Clarinet
B-flat Cornet I-II-III
Horn in F
Euphonium (Bass Clef)/Bassoon
Tuba/String Bass
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Snare Drum
  • Tambourine
  • Triangle
  • Wood Block


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Flight of the Bumblebee is an orchestral interlude written by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov for his opera The Tale of Tsar Saltan, composed in 1899–1900. The piece closes Act III, Tableau 1, during which the magic Swan-Bird changes Prince Gvidon Saltanovich (the Tsar's son) into an insect so that he can fly away to visit his father (who does not know that he is alive). Although in the opera the Swan-Bird sings during the first part of the "Flight", her vocal line is melodically uninvolved and easily omitted; this feature, combined with the fact that the number decisively closes the scene, made easy extraction as an orchestral concerto piece possible.

- Program Note from Wikipedia

Flight of the Bumblebee closes Act Ill, Tableau 1 of Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Tale of Tsar Saltan. Written in 1899-1900 based on a poem by Aleksandr Pushkin, the opera was first performed in Moscow on November 3, 1900.

In the opera, the Swan-Bird changes the Tsar’s son into a bumblebee so he can fly over the sea to visit his father, who had presumed his son dead. Although it was originally written for the Swan-Bird to sing at the beginning, this vocal part is generally omitted when the Flight is performed as a separate concert piece.

- Program Note from Cockrill Middle School Honors Band concert program, 14 December 2016


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

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by This Composer