Prelude in the Dorian Mode
Year: c. 1550 / 1937-1941
Duration: c. 5:00
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Hal Leonard Corporation
Cost: Score and Parts – Out of print.
(Needed, please join the WRP if you can help.)
None discovered thus far.
Prelude in the Dorian Mode was one of Grainger's "chosen gems" for band or wind groups (one of the many irregular terms employed by Grainger, particularly from the 1920s on, in a form he called "blue-eyed English"), composed for Joseph Maddy and the Interlochen Arts Festival. The Prelude is wind band scoring of the de Cabezón's Tiento del Segundo Tono, a richly polyphonic keyboard work. de Cabezón composed a number of polyphonic sacred works, versillos, diferencias and twenty-nine tientos, of which this one "on the second tone" was one. Grainger collected and set twenty-tree "chosen gems," historic music he deeply valued. As quoted by Richard Franko Goldman, "The 500 years of decipherable music that precedes Band is at least as lovely and important as all post-Bach music."
Grainger set Prelude in the Dorian Mode in his concept of elastic scoring, with linear "tone strands" that may be performed by various combinations of instruments.
- Program Note from Teaching Music Through Performance in Band
de Cabezón’s music is richly polyphonic. Although he composed primarily for keyboard instruments, his music also possesses a haunting vocal quality. His tientos, such as the Prelude in the Dorian Mode, are instrumental fantasies built upon the opening motive. These compositions make masterful use of fugal counterpoint, creating tensions between the motive and imitative secondary lines. The Dorian mode is a scale beginning on the second tone. In this Prelude in the Dorian Mode, the opening motive repeats at irregular intervals throughout the main body of the work, forming a basis for the four-part polyphony which evolves around it.
When Grainger’s band setting was created, Leopold Stokowski’s orchestral Bach transcriptions were much in vogue. Unlike Stokowski’s gleaming, modern sounding Bach, Grainger skillfully recalls the darker historical quality of the tiento and its vocal counterpart, the motet. The music is de Cabezon, the expressive concept and colors are entirely Grainger’s. His modern wind-band setting is beautifully evocative of de Cabezon’s Renaissance world.
- Program Note by Keith Brion
- Louisiana: IV
- Oklahoma: IV-A
- Texas: IV. Complete
To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project
- All-Henrico County (Henrico, Va.) High School Band (Brian A. Coffill, conductor) – 23 January 2020
- Penn State University (University Park) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Dennis Glocke, conductor) – 26 February 2019
- State University of New York, Potsdam, Crane Wind Ensemble (Brian K. Doyle, conductor) – 15 February 2019
- University of North Carolina, Greensboro, Symphonic Band (Pamela L. Klena, conductor) – 19 February 2019
- Virginia Tech (Blacksburg) Wind Ensemble (Jonathan Caldwell, conductor) – 26 January 2019
- University of Texas (Austin) Symphony Band (Joshua Gall, conductor) –- 7 December 2018
- Metropolitan Wind Symphony (Lexington, Mass). (Louis J. Buckley, conductor) – 4 March 2018
- University of British Columbia (Vancouver) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Lauren Visel conductor) – 6 October 2017
- Appalachian State University Wind Ensemble (William A. Gora, conductor) - 2005
Works for Winds by this Composer
- Prelude in the Dorian Mode (scored Grainger, ed. Brion and Brand)
- Cabezón, A.; Brion, K.; Grainger, P.; Brand, M. (1989). Prelude in the Dorian mode = Tiènto del segundo tono [score] . Jenson Publications: U.S.A.
- Miles, Richard B., and Larry Blocher. 2002. Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 4. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 365-369.