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Nabucco Overture

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Giuseppe Verdi

Giuseppe Verdi (trans. Lucien Cailliet)

General Info

Year: 1842 / 1959
Duration: c. 9:00
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Orchestra
Publisher: Sam Fox
Cost: Score and Parts - Out of print

For availability information, see Discussion tab, above.


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
English Horn
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Saxophone
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Cornet I-II-III
B-flat Trumpet
E-flat Horn or Alto I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion (3 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Orchestral Bells
  • Snare Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Nabucco, an opera in four acts by Giuseppe Verdi, was given its premiere performance at La Scala in Milan on March 9, 1842. Its success proclaimed a new hero of the Italian opera, placing Verdi in the company of the masters, Rossini, Bellini, and Donizetti. Melodies in the overture depict Verdi's affinity for fleeting tunes that seem to leave an indelible impression on the listener. The crescendo employed here, which builds over lengthy spaces, became known as the "Rossini Crescendo" and was a popular device of opera composers of the period

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band

Overture to Nabucco (1841) was first performed at La Scala in Milan in 1842. Verdi commented that "this is the opera with which my artistic career really begins. And though I had many difficulties to fight against, it is certain that Nabucco was born under a lucky star.”

The opera follows the plight of the Jews as they were assaulted, conquered, and subsequently exiled from their homeland by the Babylonian King Nabucco (Nebuchadnezzar). The historical events are used as background for a romantic and political plot.

- Program Note from Illinois State University Symphony Band concert program, 6 October 2016


State Ratings

  • Alabama: Class A
  • Arkansas: IV
  • Kansas: V
  • North Carolina: VI
  • Tennessee: V
  • Virginia: V


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 2 L-Z. Meredith Music Publications, 2004, pp. 320.
  • Smith, Norman E. (2002). Program Notes for Band. Chicago: GIA Publications, pp. 610.
  • Verdi, G.; Cailliet, L. (1959). Nabucco: Overture [score]. Sam Fox: New York.