Preamble for a Solemn Occasion

From Wind Repertory Project
Aaron Copland

Aaron Copland (trans. Copland)

General Info

Year: 1949 / 1973
Duration: c. 6:00
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Boosey & Hawkes
Cost: Score and Parts - $100.00   |   Score Only - $9.95


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II
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 Cornet I-II-III
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III-IV
Euphonium I-II
Tuba I-II
String Bass
Percussion (3 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Field Drum
  • Gong
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tenor Drum
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The National Broadcasting Company commissioned Copland to mark the first anniversary of the United Nations’ 1948 “Universal Declaration of Human Rights.” The resulting Preamble for a Solemn Occasion, written for orchestra and narrator, was developed and completed during August and September, 1949. The work was premiered in Carnegie Hall (New York City) on December 10, 1949, by the Boston Symphony with Leonard Bernstein conducting and Laurence Olivier narrating. Copland himself transcribed the work for concert band in 1974, and included an alternative version to be performed without narrator.

- Program Note from Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music


(Needed - please join the WRP if you can help.)

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music. "Aaron Copland." Accessed 12 September 2015.
  • Copland, A. [1974]. Prelude for a Solemn Occasion [score]. Boosey & Hawkes: [s.l.]
  • Girsberger, Russ. Percussion Assignments for Band & Wind Ensemble. Volume I: A-K. Galesburg, MD: Meredith Music Publications, 2004, 68. Print.