From Wind Repertory Project
Steven Bryant

Steven Bryant

General Info

Year: 2018
Duration: c. 28:35
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Steven Bryant
Cost: Score and Parts (digital) - $350.00   |   Score Only (digital) - $100.00


1. Shouting Defiance – 2:30
2. Nocturne– 4:10
3. Exclamation– 1:38
4. Meditation – 13:16
5. Zeal – 5:20


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II-III-IV (doubling Piccolo)
Alto Flute (optional)
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
Contrabassoon (optional)
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet (optional)
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II (I doubling Soprano Saxophone)
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II
Bass Trombone
Euphonium I-II
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III-IV-V, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • China Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Marimba
  • Sandpaper Blocks
  • Sizzle Cymbal
  • Splash Cymbal
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Tom-Toms (2, Medium and low)
  • Vibraphone
  • Wood Block
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Pendulum is symphonic in scope, developing a small amount of musical material over five movements. The music oscillates between exultant exclamations and introspective ruminations, a pendulum of mental states.

Shouting Defiance is an emphatic fanfare that opens the work with a defiant, yet optimistic, expanding chord progression. The title is taken from the lyrics for Illinois Loyalty:

Lead on your sons and daughters, fighting for you,
Like men of old, on giants placing reliance, shouting defiance—

Nocturne is a short, simple chorale, using an impromptu melody I wrote on a napkin during Paul Bryan's ninety-eighth birthday party in March 2018. "PB," as he is known to his friends, is the former director of the Duke University Wind Symphony, a noted musicologist, and still plays his euphonium every day. During his tenure at Duke (1954-1987), he commissioned Giannini's Symphony No. 3, Dello Joio's Variants on a Medieaval Tune, and Persichetti's So Pure the Star, among other works. He also once had Percy Grainger to Duke as a guest composer.

Exclamation is a ninety-second interjection of material related to Movements I and V -- an outburst of manic energy that quickly expends itself. Persichetti's Divertimento for Band (a favorite of mine from my band days) is often lurking in the background of my sonic imagination, and, to my ears at least, this movement bears some influence from that work.

Meditation is the most spacious music of the five movements. Beginning attacca from Exclamation, the music juxtaposes the opening chord progression from Shouting Defiance with the melody from Nocturne. The patient pulse of time marked by a quiet bass drum underscores a continually evaporating, blurred texture. The music culminates in a brief episode of arrival which dissolves, returning us to a state of measured stasis.

Zeal ignites immediately into a simmering cloud of breath and cymbals. The expanding chord progression from Shouting Defiance returns, and the music moves with simple-minded, burning self-certainty, embodying the seductive euphoria and danger of absolute belief.

Pendulum was commissioned by the University of Illinois Bands with former University of Illinois faculty and students as part of the Illinois Bands sesquicentennial celebration.

- Program Note from the Illinois Wind Symphony concert program, 21 February 2019


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State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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