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As the Wood Smoke Rises

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Brett Abigaña

Brett Abigaña

General Info

Year: 2014
Duration: c. 5:30
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: World Projects
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $160.00   |   Score Only (print) - $35.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
Piccolo Trumpet (optional)
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
C Bass Trumpet (optional)
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Bass Trombone
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III-IV, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bell Tree
  • Chimes
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Crotales
  • Flexatones (2)
  • Glockenspiel
  • Marimba
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tam-Tam
  • Temple Blocks
  • Tom-Tom
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Having recently recorded Brett Abigaña’s towering Symphony No. 1 for band and chorus, the Navy Band was pleased to collaborate with the composer on his newest piece, written especially for the ensemble. Abigaña describes his work as follows:

As the Wood Smoke Rises represents the culmination of an aesthetic I have been exploring for the past few years. I have lately become very dissatisfied that in our standard contemporary large ensembles, the instrumentation is lacking any strummed string instrument. Of course, de Falla, Ravel, Tchaikovsky, and others have experimented with pizzicato strings, even suggesting the musicians hold them like mandolins, but that doesn‘t really replicate the sound of a strummed guitar. I have been attempting to create the same type of sound energy as those strummed instruments, but within a standard ensemble. To accomplish that, I have been exploring the uniquely American bluegrass aesthetic. In order to incorporate this aesthetic, I’ve been working with decidedly modal constructs, and adopting some basic formal structures of bluegrass. I can then stylize and elevate those forms and constructs into a more sophisticated entity. I hope the result is a uniquely American sound, while not sounding like a musicological treatise or, worse yet, a musical gimmick meant for a cheap round of applause. In this specific piece, I have chosen a combination of rondo, call and response, and head/solos/head forms to create a kind of variations on a theme which is finally exhibited in its true form only at the end of the piece.

- Program Note by Andrew Skaggs for the U.S. Navy Band

Commercial Discography


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by This Composer