Colonel Bogey (ed. Williams)

From Wind Repertory Project
Kenneth J. Alford

Kenneth J Alford (ed. Mark Williams)

General Info

Year: 1914 / 2001
Duration: c. 2:40
Difficulty: I-1/2 (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Alfred Music Publishers
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $49.00; (digital) - $49.00   |   Score Only (print) - $7.00


Full Score
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bells
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Snare Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Here's the favorite march made famous as the theme to Bridge On The River Kwai. It's very appealing to both band and audience and offers some great teaching opportunities as well. Invite your audience to join in on the whistling!

- Program Note from publisher

The interval of a descending minor third, seemingly basic to human communication, appears to be a factor in the composition of this march and also a reason for its innate appeal. Strolling on the Fort George golf course in Inverness, Scotland, one day in 1913, Ricketts reportedly heard the two-note interval whistled as a warning, and the result was a world-famous march with the familiar golf term "bogey" in its title.

In 1957 the film the Bridge on the River Kwai revived interest in this World War I march, and the younger generation of soldiers (and bandsmen) sang the same bawdy words heard by Alford [the pseudonym of Frederick Ricketts] 30 years earlier. According to Lt. Col. F. Vivian Dunn, the composer "greatly deprecated this usage, but was resigned to it as he understood the cheerful fortitude of the British troops in the face of adversity in the war." Capitalizing on the popularity of the original march -- still among the world's most popular -- Rickets later arranged a potpourri of several of his marches using the title Colonel Bogey on Parade.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Alford, K.; Williams, M. (2001). Colonel Bogey [score]. Alfred Publishing: Van Nuys, Calif.
  • Perusal score
  • Smith, Norman E. (2002). Program Notes for Band. Chicago: GIA Publications, pp. 504