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Indispensable Man, The

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Victoria Bond

Victoria Bond

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Subtitle: A Roosevelt Portrait

General Info

Year: 2011
Duration: c. 17:35
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Symphony
Publisher: Protone Music
Cost: Score and Parts - Price varies


Full Score
Solo B-flat Clarinet
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Percussion I-II-III-IV

(percussion detail desired)


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The Indispensable Man

Sometime when you're feeling important;
Sometime when your ego's in bloom;
Sometime when you take it for granted,
You're the best qualified in the room:

Sometime when you feel that your going,
Would leave an unfillable hole,
Just follow these simple instructions,
And see how they humble your soul.

Take a bucket and fill it with water,
Put your hand in it up to the wrist,
Pull it out and the hole that's remaining,
Is a measure of how much you'll be missed.

You can splash all you wish when you enter,
You may stir up the water galore,
But stop, and you'll find that in no time,
It looks quite the same as before.

The moral of this quaint example,
Is to do just the best that you can,
Be proud of yourself but remember,
There's no indispensable man.

- Saxon White Kessinger

Using Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s own words in a dramatic script written by Dr. Myles Lee, composer Victoria Bond has written a work for narrator and large wind ensemble. Modeling the form of the piece after Aaron Copland’s A Lincoln Potrait, Bond evokes Roosevelt’s era by drawing from the American big band tradition popular during his presidency.

In Dr. Lee’s script, Roosevelt’s dynamic character, his triumph over the adversity of his handicap and his unforgettable words are brought to life. His speeches are quoted and put in the context of the turbulent history that gave rise to such as phrases as: “To some generations much is given. Of other generations much is asked. This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny.” Infusing these powerful words and other speeches like them with inspiring music is the goal of The Indispensable Man.

- Program Note by composer


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Oklahoma (Norman) Wind Symphony (Tim Pardue, conductor) - 22 April 2021
  • University of Nebraska (Lincoln) Wind Ensemble (Carolyn Barber, conductor) – 11 March 2020

Works for Winds by This Composer