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Carnival of Venice (arr Arban)

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Jean-Baptiste Arban

Folk song variations arranged by Jean-Baptiste Arban and Donald Hunsberger

This work may appear under its title in French, Le Carnaval de Venise.

General Info

Year: c. 1865 / 2015
Duration: c. 8:10
Difficulty: VI (soloist) / III (ensemble) (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Alfred Music
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $150.00   |   Score Only (print) - $30.00


Full Score
Solo Cornet
C Piccolo (Flute III)
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
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Bass Trombone
String Bass
Percussion I-II, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bell Tree
  • Bells
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Snare Drum
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The Carnival of Venice is a folk tune popularly associated with the words "My hat, it has three corners". A series of theme and variations has been written for a number of solo instruments, as "show off" pieces that contain virtuoso displays of double and triple tonguing, and fast tempos.

- Program Note from Wikipedia

When Arban wrote this set of variations in the early 1860s, he may have been inspired, as well as challenged, by Niccolo Paganini's twenty variations for violin on the same air. The folklike melody has been attributed to both Paganini and the German opera composer Reinhard Keiser (1674-1739). Arban would probably also be inspired and challenged if he could hear his "Carnival" variations played by contemporary virtuosos of the tuba, euphonium, trombone, and cornet – for example, as recorded by Wynton Marsalis with Don Hunsberger and the Eastman Wind Ensemble.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band

For Wynton Marsalis.

- Program Note from Score

Commercial Discography

None discovered thus far.

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Baldwin-Wallace University (Berea, Ohio) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Dwight Oltman, conductor; Martin Cochran, euphonium) – 14 February 2020
  • New York (N.Y.) Wind Orchestra (Hana Kim, conductor; Joe Burgstaller, trumpet) – 14 December 29
  • Raritan Valley Symphonic Band (Woodcliff Lake, N.J.) (Christopher Sumner, conductor; Kenneth DeCarlo, trumpet) – 24 April 2019
  • Bemidji (Minn.) State University Wind Ensemble (Scott Guidry, conductor; Mike Newton, euphonium) – 24 September 2017
  • Concord (Mass.) Band (James O'Dell, conductor; Richard Given, cornet) – 10 June 2017
  • United States Army Band (Ft. Myer, Va.) (Richard K. Henebry, conductor; Jeremy McBride, euphonium) – 16 June 2016

Works for Winds by this Composer

None discovered thus far.