Russian Folk Fantasy

From Wind Repertory Project
James Curnow

James Curnow

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General Info

Year: 1992
Duration: c. 4:00
Difficulty: III (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Hal Leonard Corporation
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $65.00   |   Score Only (print) - $7.50


Full Score
C Piccolo/Flute III
Flute I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III

(percussion detail desired)


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This composition is a setting of three Russian folk songs that can be found translated in the text Russian Folk Songs, edited by Rose Rubin and Michael Stillman, and published by Random House. “The Slender Mountain Ash” is a love song about a thin ash tree that feels lonely and sad because she sees a big strong oak tree across the river that she would like to whisper to and whose branches she would like to touch. The slender ash would also like to be close to the oak tree for protection from the wind breaking her branches. However, the fate of the slender ash is forever to be on the other side of the river longing to be with the oak.

The “Troika Rushing” is a story about a man riding in a traditional three- horse drawn carriage traveling to see his true love. The song describes the running horses, the dust under their hooves, and the laughing, crying, and ringing of the bells that are on the running horses. Questions are asked in the song: “who is the rider, from where is the rider coming, and where is the rider going?” The song ends without one knowing whether the rider ever reaches his final destination to see his true love.

“No Sounds from the City Are Heard” is a reflective song about the tragedy of a man who has to be in prison for the rest of his life. The song starts with a verse that describes the peaceful city under the full moon as the wind dances and blows through the leaves and blossoms of the trees. At this most peaceful and quiet time, the prisoner starts his song. In his song, he says goodbye to his home, his family, his father, his bride, and his wedding ring, knowing that he will be in prison forever. He knows that he will never become a husband or a father, and in the quiet of the night in his prison, the song is completed by the whispering wind.

- Program Note from Teaching Music Through Performance in Band


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State Ratings

  • Alabama: Class C
  • Georgia: III
  • Iowa: II
  • Louisiana: II
  • Oklahoma: II-A
  • Tennessee: III
  • Texas: II. Complete
  • West Virginia: III


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works


  • Curnow, J. (1992). Russian Folk Fantasy [score]. Hal Leonard: Milwaukee, Wisc.
  • Miles, Richard B., and Larry Blocher. 2002. Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 4. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 193-197.