Perfect Fool, The (arr Short)

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Gustav Holst

Gustav Holst (arr. Short)

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Subtitle: Ballet Music

General Info

Year: 1922 / 2005
Duration: c. 10:00
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Orchestra
Publisher: Bandleader Publications
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - £50.00


1. Introduction
2. Dance of the Spirits of the Earth
3. Dance of the Spirits of Water
4. Dance of the Spirit of Fire


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None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The ballet music to the opera, superbly arranged by one of the UK's leading writers on Holst and his music. It depicts the incantations of the Wizard as he calls upon the spirits of Earth, Water and Fire.

- Program Note from publisher

The Perfect Fool is an opera in one act with music and libretto by the English composer Gustav Holst. Holst composed the work over the period of 1918 to 1922. The opera received its premiere at the Covent Garden Theatre, London on 14 May 1923.

In the score, Holst pokes fun at the works of Verdi, Wagner's Parsifal and Debussy. In the opera, the part of the Fool consists of only one word. One interpretation of the possible symbolism of the opera, from Donald Tovey, is that the Princess symbolises the world of opera and the Fool represents the British public.

The opera was not a success, as audiences had found the story confusing.

- Program Note from Wikipedia


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State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • State University of New York, Fredonia, Wind Ensemble (Paula Holcomb, conductor) – 29 February 2020
  • University of Oregon (Eugene) Symphonic Band (Jason Silveira, conductor) – 13 February 2018
  • Concordia College (Moorhead, Minn.) Band (Peter Haberman, conductor) – 19 November 2017

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Music