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March and Cortege of Bacchus

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Léo Delibes

Léo Delibes (arr. Joseph Kreines)

Subtitle: From Sylvia

General Info

Year: 1878 / 2005
Duration: 5:40
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Music Publishing
Cost: Score and Parts - $80.00   |   Score Only - $11.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Solo Soprano Clarinet I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass 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-III
String Bass
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Snare Drum
  • Triangle


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Leo Delibes composed his ballet Sylvia in 1876. It achieved considerable popularity, and several of the individual umbers were grouped into a suite, which orchestras all over the world have played.

The March and Cortege of Bacchus appears in Act III of the ballet, describing the arrival of Bacchus (the god of wine and celebration) and his followers. The music is martial, lyric, grand and brilliant, building to an exciting conclusion.

- Program Note from score

This march is taken from Act Two of Delibes' ballet Sylvia -- La nymphe de Diane, composed in 1876. Brass flourishes amid a pompous atmosphere characterize the first section, which, in the ballet, the satyrs (mythological deities with long pointed ears and short horns) enter with their javelins. Next, the maidens enter, bringing a goat for sacrifice, followed by additional satyrs. As indicated in the music, the revelry begins with the quickening of the tempo, after which a slow-moving melody suggests the arrival of the wine-drinking god followed by a continuation of the pranks of the frenzied company.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band

Delibes’ ballet Sylvia was first produced at the Paris Opera in 1876. The plot tells of Sylvia, a beautiful huntress who is captured and abducted by Orion, the huntsman. Amyntas, who is in love with her, pursues her and her captor to a wooded area on the sea coast. At this point a festival to Bacchus is held. This is the point in the ballet where the March and Procession of Bacchus is performed. A ship approaches. Erose, disguised as a pirate, and several veiled slave women disembark. One of the slaves dances for Amynas. She then lifts her veil to reveal that she is Sylvia.

When it was first performed, Sylvia was a triumph. It, along with his earlier ballet Coppelia, permanently established Delibes as the foremost French composer of ballet music.

- Program Note from Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music


State Ratings

  • Florida: V


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Southern Mississippi (Hattiesburg) Symphonic Winds (Colin McKenzie, conductor) - 8 March 2022
  • University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Wind Ensemble (Michael Griffith, conductor) - 13 April 2021
  • Texas 5A Symphonic Band (Kevin Geraldi, conductor) - 15 February 2020 (2020 TMEA Conference, San Antonio)
  • Sharon (Mass.) Concert Band (Stephen Bell, conductor)– 8 June 2019
  • Oklahoma State University (Stillwater) Concert Band (Marc Sosnowchik, conductor) – 27 April 2017
  • Arkansas Winds Community Concert Band (Fayetteville) (Michael Ferguson, conductor) – 25 February 2017
  • Maybrook Wind Ensemble (Orange County, N.Y.) (Kevin Scott, conductor) – 9 December 2016
  • Association of Texas Small School Bands Concert Band (Philip Clements, conductor) - 13 February 2016 (2016 TMEA Conference, San Antonio)
  • Oakland (Calif.) Municipal Band (Troy Davis, conductor) - 19 July 2015
  • Flint (Mich.) Concert Band (Bruce Nieuwenhuis, conductor) - 1 May 2015
  • College of Saint Rose (Albany, N.Y.) Wind Ensemble and ESY Wind Orchestra - 4 March 2014

Works for Winds by This Composer