Ave Maria (Schubert)
This work bears the designation Opus 52.
Year: 1825 / 2004
Duration: c. 4:30
Difficulty: III (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Piano
Publisher: Manhattan Beach Music
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $125.00 | Score Only (print) - $15.00
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
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II
None discovered thus far.
With the possible exception of Mozart, no other composer in the history of music ever surpassed Franz Schubert's genius for melodic writing. His lieder (art songs for voice and piano) were composed at an astonishing rate, and number in the hundreds. Some of Vienna's greatest singers were his closest friends, and he took pleasure in creating his songs for them. One of his most well-known songs, Ave Maria, was composed in 1825 when he was 28 years old.
In my setting, I considered carefully the problem of translating piano music to the wind medium without compromising the dignity and beauty of the original. To have simply transferred the piano part literally to the winds would have resulted in a timid and thin sound. For me, the solution was to find and connect the multiple melodic layers implied by the piano figurations, creating a richer, more polyphonic texture suitable to the winds. I had lots of fun dissecting and re-assembling the piece, and I took occasional liberties in the process, but I never strayed far from the basic harmonic structure of the original, and I strove hard to preserve a Schubertian elegance and grace.
There are other differences between the two versions. In Schubert's setting, three verses of text are set to the same music. With the absence of the text in my version, it seemed sufficient to state the verse only twice, and it seemed necessary to find other ways to control and vary the dramatic flow. I took liberties with the octave placement of the melody, and rather than repeat the second verse literally, I constructed it as a subtle variation of the first. Finally, and perhaps most obviously, I changed the basic pulse of the original from the eighth-note to the quarter for greater ease on the eye.
Even without its text, Schubert's song sounds more devotional than virtually anything he ever composed. I kept this at the front of my mind throughout the creative process. Above all, I hope my setting reflects the profound sense of reverence and humility expressed in the original.
- Program Note by Frank Ticheli
None discovered thus far.
- Georgia: V
- Indiana: ISSMA SENIOR BAND GROUP III
- Kansas: III
- Louisiana: III
- Michigan: Senior High B
- Mississippi: VI-A
- Tennessee: III
- Texas: III. Complete
To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project
- Idaho State University (Pocatello) Civic Concert Band (Patrick Brooks, conductor) – 13 November 2019
- Iowa State University (Ames) Symphonic Band (Michael Golemo, conductor) – 16 February 2018
- University of Texas (Austin) Texas Concert Band (Scott Hanna, conductor) – 24 April 2017
- Philadelphia (Penn. ) Wind Symphony (Paul Bryan, conductor) – 20 March 2017
- University of Calgary Wind Ensemble – 2015
Works for Winds by this Composer
- Ave Maria (arr. Ticheli) (1825/2004)
- Erl King (arr. Daehn) (2013)
- Impromptu (arr. Hautvast) (2014)
- Little Symphony for Winds (tr. Reynolds) (1817-18/2003)
- Marche Militaire (arr. Harnsberger) (1818/2011)
- Military March
- Rosamunde Overture (arr. Winterbottom)
- Schubert, F.; Ticheli, F. (2004). Ave Maria : For Concert Band : Op. 52 [score]. Manhattan Beach Music: Brooklyn, N.Y.