Aviators, The (1931)

From Wind Repertory Project
John Philip Sousa

John Philip Sousa

General Info

Year: 1931
Duration: c. 2:40
Difficulty: III (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Theodore Presser
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $19.99

For further availability information, see Discussion tab, above.


Conductor’s Score (Cornet 1 part)
D-flat Piccolo
Flute I-II-III
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Bass Saxophone
B-flat Cornet I-II
B-flat Trumpet I-II
F Trumpets Regimental
E-flat Horn or Alto I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Cymbals
  • Snare Drum
  • Xylophone (Performance practice adds xylophone during the first repeat of the final strain.)


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Friends and associates of Sousa were constantly telling of his subtle wit. The object of one of his rare pranks was Captain William A. Moffett, the man responsible for his enlistment and commission in the U.S. Navy during World War I. Moffett needed a musician with considerable administrative ability to organize navy band units at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. Sousa's brother-in-law happened to be on Moffett's staff. He arranged a meeting between Moffett and Sousa to discuss the possibility of obtaining Sousa's Services.

Sousa arrived at a decision quickly but decided to have fun at Moffett's expense. He indicated that he would like to accept the position but raised the question as to whether or not the navy would meet his salary demand. Moffett realized that Sousa was a wealthy man but had not expected such a blunt approach. He apologized for the navy's relatively low pay scale and offered Sousa $2,500 per year. Sousa replied: "I refuse to take such a sum! Tell Secretary Daniels hat if he wishes for my help in this war that he will have to part with not less than one dollar a month for the duration of the conflict."

Moffett and Sousa became warm friends. Moffett had a distinguished military career, rising to the rank of rear admiral as chief of the navy's Bureau of Aeronautics. He was later nicknamed "Father of the Flattop." In one of his last musical efforts, Sousa dedicated The Aviators to him.

- Program Note from John Philip Sousa: A Descriptive Catalog of His Works


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • United States Coast Guard Band (New London, Conn.) (Adam Williamson, conductor) - 20 November 2022
  • University of Oklahoma Wind Symphony (Norman) (William Wakefield, conductor) - 19 February 2023
  • United States Marine Band (Washington, D.C.) (Jason K. Fettig, conductor) - 22 January 2023

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works