George Washington Bicentennial March

From Wind Repertory Project
John Philip Sousa

John Philip Sousa (ed. Frederick Fennell)

General Info

Year: 1932 / 2006
Duration: c. 3:50
Difficulty: III (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Alfred Publishing Co.
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $82.00; (digital) - $70.00   |   Score Only (print) - $12.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
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
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Cornet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Percussion (3 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals (doubling bass drum)
  • Snare Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

To commemorate the two hundredth anniversary of the birth of George Washington, a Bicentennial Commission in Washington, D.C., was formed. A gala celebration was held, the climax being an impressive ceremony at the Capital Plaza on February 22, 1932. The commission had asked Sousa to take part in the final ceremony, and he composed this march for the occasion. In this affair, one of two final appearances before his death, Sousa conducted the combined bands of the U.S. Army, Navy, and Marine Corps in this new march.

-Program Note from John Philip Sousa: A Descriptive Catalog of His Works

John Philip Sousa remained active as both a composer and conductor to the very end of his life and wrote several superb marches in 1930 and 1931. A special commission was formed in Washington, D.C., in 1930 to coordinate the upcoming national celebration of the two-hundredth anniversary of George Washington’s birth, and Sousa was engaged to compose a special march for the occasion. He completed the score to George Washington Bicentennial in June of that year, and while on tour with his Sousa Band in November, he made a stop in Washington, D.C., to conduct a preview of the new march with the U.S. Marine Band for President Herbert Hoover and his guests in front of the White House.

The Sousa Band continued to perform the march on its 1930 and 1931 tours before the actual bicentennial in 1932. Sousa himself took part in the climactic ceremony held at the Capitol Plaza on February 22, 1932, where he conducted the combined premier bands of the U.S. Army, Navy, and Marine Corps. This would be the last time he would conduct the Marine Band in public. Just a few weeks later, after finishing a rehearsal in preparation for a concert with the famed Ringgold Band of Reading, Pennsylvania, Sousa unexpectedly passed away on March 6, 1932.

- Program Note from U.S. Marine Band concert program, 14 December 2016


State Ratings



To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Saratoga (Calif.) High School Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Norman Dea, conductor) – 2 February 2024 (2024 CASMEC Conference, Sacramento)
  • University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa) Wind Ensemble (Kenneth Ozzello, conductor) - 6 November 2023
  • Atlanta (Ga.) Wind Symphony (David Kehler, conductor) - 16 December 2021 (2021 Midwest Clinic)
  • United States Army Band (Ft. Myer, Va.) (Elizabeth G. Elliott, Conductor) - 23 February 2019
  • DuPage (Glen Ellyn, Ill.) Community Concert Band (Terry Redford, conductor) - 16 October 2017
  • Oklahoma State University (Stillwater) Symphonic Band (Douglas Henderson, conductor) – 28 April 2016
  • Gold Coast Wind Ensemble (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) – (Clint H. Hawley, conductor) – 10 April 2016
  • United States Army Band (Ft. Myer, Va.) (Timothy J. Holtan, conductor) – 2 April 2016

Works for Winds by This Composer

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