Three Latin American Sketches

From Wind Repertory Project
Aaron Copland

Aaron Copland (trans. Russel C. Mikkelson)

General Info

Year: 1972 / 2021
Duration: c. 10:50
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Orchestra
Publisher: In Press 2021
Cost: Score and Parts - Unknown


1. Estribillo – 3:15
2. Paisaje Mexicano – 3:55
3. Danza de Jalisco – 3:35


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Saxophone
E-flat Alto 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
String Bass
Percussion I-II, including:

  • Claves
  • Conga
  • Ratchet
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Triangle
  • Wood Block
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The music of Latin America had a particular appeal for Copland. He composed two dances that when put together became Two Mexican Pieces. Later, he added a third and changed the title to Three Latin American Sketches. Copland wrote, "The tunes, the rhythms and the temperament of the pieces are folksy, while the orchestration is bright and snappy and the music sizzles along -- or at least it seems to me that it does."

This version for wind ensemble was arranged by Russel C. Mikkelson and is dedicated to the musicians of The Ohio State University Wind Symphony.

- Program Note by Vivien Perlis and Russel C. Mikkelson

The challenges of musical life in America between the World Wars required both flexibility and creativity from those who would survive, and Copland and his music evolved. His voice, however, remained consistent and recognizable, featuring contrasting meter and accent and tempering dissonant textures with a strong sense of tonality. By the late 1940s Copland was widely regarded as the foremost American composer of his time. During this period he traveled extensively in Central and South America on behalf of both the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs (1941) and the State Department (1947). There he found vast sources of new musical material, and the forms, harmonies, and rhythms were different yet familiar enough to add fascinating new sparkle to his vast musical vocabulary.

Paisaje Mexicano (Mexican Landscape) and Danza de Jalisco (Dance of Jalisco, a state in northwestern Mexico) were written in Acapulco early in 1959, but Copland soon decided both works were too brief to remain in the concert repertoire. André Kostelanetz asked him for a third piece in 1971, and the result was Estribillo. The collected Three Latin American Sketches was premiered by the New York Philharmonic under the baton of Kostelanetz in 1972. Estribillo, which refers to a particular type of refrain structure, was also Copland’s last orchestral composition. It is based on a melodic fragment that he had heard in Venezuela, and is a bold, sharply accented work. Paisaje Mexicano, the contrasting second piece, is poetic and lyrical, reflecting the gentle shape of Mexican melodies as well as its terrain, while the lively, vigorous Dance features alternating contrasting rhythms, typical of much Latin American music.

- Program Note by Viola Roth for liner notes of Naxos CD Aaron Copland


(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

  • Ohio State University (Columbus) Wind Symphony) (Russel C. Mikkelson, conductor) - 6 October 2021

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Russel Mikkelson, personal correspondence, October 2021