Music for the Royal Fireworks, The (arr Boudreau)

From Wind Repertory Project
George Frideric Handel

George Frideric Handel (arr. Robert Boudreau)

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General Info

Year: 1749 / 1959
Duration: c. 23:00
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Edition Peters
Cost: Score and Parts - Rental   |   Score Only (print) - $29.50


(Movement names desired)


Full Score
Bassoon I-II
C Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III
Side Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Handel's Royal Fireworks Music was composed in 1749 for a mammoth festival proclaimed by King George II to celebrate the Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle following the war of the Austrian succession. In the outdoor setting of Green Park a large wooden building was erected with broad wings and a huge musicians' gallery. On it were figures of Mars and Neptune, and above, a bas relief of King George handing Peace to Britannia. Amid the splendid setting, Handel's music was to be the feature attraction, followed by a tremendous display of fireworks. The performance of the music was accorded great acclaim and was followed by cannon and ordnance shots, but the fireworks proved fitful and erratic. In the grand finale the entire building was set on fire and burned to the ground, enraging the king whose image crumbled and fell in flames. Only Handel's reputation remained unscathed, fur the music brought a governorship and the lasting favor of the king.

Like the Water Music, the work was scored for a large wind band consisting of 40 trumpets, 20 French horns, 16 oboes, 16 bassoons, 8 pair of kettledrums, flutes, fifes, and a serpent. In this edition for the modern wind band, the work has been arranged in concerto grosso with small and large groups.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band


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State Ratings

  • Alabama: Class B


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Temple University (Philadelphia, Penn.) Wind Symphony (Patricia Cornett, conductor) - 15 February 2023
  • Temple University (Philadelphia, Penn.) Wind Symphony (Patricia Cornett, conductor) – 27 January 2019
  • Temple University (Philadelphia, Penn.) Wind Symphony (Patricia Cornett, conductor) – 28 November 2018

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works


  • Handel, H.; Bourdreau, R. (1959). Music for the Royal Fireworks [score]. Peters: New York.
  • Music for the Royal Fireworks. Wikipedia. Accessed 12 October 2022
  • Smith, Norman E. (2002). Program Notes for Band. Chicago: GIA Publications, pp. 268