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Grand Tour, The

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Leslie J. Deutsch

Leslie Deutsch

General Info

Year: 2017
Duration: c. 20:00
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Leslie Deutsch
Cost: Score and Parts - Contact Leslie Deutsch


1. Earth
2. Jupiter
3. Saturn
4. Uranus
5. Neptune
6. Interstellar Space


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
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-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II
Percussion I-II-III-IV, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Glockenspiel
  • Piatti
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone
  • Wood Block
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The Grand Tour was inspired by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Voyager Mission’s 40th anniversary this past year [2017]. This pair of spacecraft have done a lot to inspire. After visiting the outer planets of our solar system, one of the craft has entered interstellar space. Much of what we know about these regions came directly from Voyager. The Grand Tour was the name of the trajectory that these spacecraft followed on their journey – a major mathematical achievement in its own right. The composition is in six movements, each corresponding to a place visited by the mission:

Earth – This is where it all started. This movement represents the development and launch of the two spacecraft -- the work of thousands of people. The spacecraft development theme is derived from a 12-bar blues set in 5/4 time. The two launches appear as short 3/4 time segments of ascending figures.

Jupiter – The main theme of this movement, which is broad and flowing like the storms of Jupiter’s atmosphere, is punctuated by short chirping sounds that represent Jupiter’s many moons. In fact, the chirp patterns are from the vocabulary of the Deutsch’s pet bird, Teri. A recent federal court decision, however, has reaffirmed that animals cannot hold copyrights in the U.S. -- so the composer is safe for the moment.

Saturn – This planet is best known for its prominent ring system. The movement has themes reminiscent of sea swells and carousel music. The latter features dissonances indicating the mystery of Saturn, its rings, and moons. Everything is in 3/4 time, representative of circular motion.

Uranus – William Herschel was a prominent organist in Bath, England, until he and his sister discovered Uranus. The king rewarded him by making him Court Astronomer. Herschel could therefore give up his honest, hard-working day job as a musician and become a scientist. In tribute to Herschel, this movement is written in the form of a baroque fugue. Herschel’s transition into science is represented by the fugue suddenly becoming loud, dissonant, and distorted.

Neptune – Neptune was, of course, a god of the sea. Though the specific name “Neptune” is Roman, most European cultures of the time had a similar deity in their pantheons -- including the Celts. This movement is therefore a theme and variations on an original but Irish-sounding jig – mostly because the Celts had perhaps more interesting music than the Romans.

Interstellar Space – This movement represents the grandeur and majesty of the Milky Way galaxy. With the Voyagers finally freeing themselves from the influence of our sun, the music also changes completely. The brass in the ensemble now represent the gravitas of the galaxy, while the woodwinds flitter around and embellish like the billions of stars the spacecraft cannot reach.

- Program Note by composer

Commercial Discography

None discovered thus far.

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Cal Tech-Occidental Wind Orchestra (Pasadena, Calif.) (Glenn D. Price, conductor) – 12 May 2018 *Premiere Performance*

Works for Winds by this Composer


  • Leslie Deutsch, personal correspondence, May 2018