Les Couleurs Fauves

From Wind Repertory Project
Karel Husa

Karel Husa

The title of this work translates from the French as Vivid Colors.

General Info

Year: 1996
Duration: c. 16:40
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Associated Music Pub.
Cost: Score and Parts - $150.00   |   Score Only - $36.00


1. Persistent Bells - 4:55
2. Ritual Dance Masks: Part 1 - 3:45
3. Ritual Dance Masks: Part 2 - 6:15


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II-III
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Contra Alto Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
Bass Saxophone/Contrabass Clarinet
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III-IV
C Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III-IV
Euphonium I-II
Tuba I-II
String Bass/Contrabassoon
Percussion, I-II-III-IV, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Chimes
  • Claves
  • Crash Cymbals (large)
  • Gong (medium and large)
  • Marimba
  • Orchestra Chimes
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal (small and large)
  • Temple Blocks (5)
  • Tom-Toms (3 high and 3 low)
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This piece was commissioned by the Northwestern University School of Music in 1996, to honor the 40th anniversary of its director of bands, John Paynter. Unfortunately, this wonderful musician and teacher died before the work’s premiere. It was first performed at a memorial concert for Paynter by the Northwestern University Symphonic Wind Ensemble, conducted by the composer, on November 16, 1996.

Karel Husa writes:

“I have always been fascinated with colors, not only in music, but also in nature and art. The paintings of the Impressionists and Fauvists have been particularly attractive to me, and their French origin accounts to the French title of my piece. The two movements gave me the chance to play with colors — sometimes gentle, sometimes raw — of the wind ensemble, something John Paynter also liked to do in his conducting. I was reminded of those French painters, whom I admired as a young student in Paris. They called themselves Fauvists (vivid, wild), for they used both, often powerful strokes of brushes with unmixed colors. Their paintings, through, breathe with sensitivity, serenity and gentleness. John’s transcriptions as well as his conducting had these characteristics, and hopefully Les Couleurs Fauves will remind you of them.”

- Program Note by the San Francisco Wind Ensemble concert program, 5 October 2013



State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Girsberger, Russ. Percussion Assignments for Band & Wind Ensemble. Volume I: A-K. Galesburg, MD: Meredith Music Publications, 2004, 160. Print.
  • Miles, Richard B., and Larry Blocher. 2002. Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 4. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 813-823.