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Courtly Dances, The

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Benjamin Britten

Benjamin Britten (arr. Jan Bach)

Subtitle: From Gloriana, op. 53

General Info

Year: 1953 / 1995
Duration: c. 9:55
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Boosey & Hawkes
Cost: Score and Parts - $104.00   |   Score Only - $10.50


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II (II doubles English Horn)
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
Cornets I-II-III
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Euphonium I-II
Tuba I-II
String Bass
Percussion (5 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Small Drum
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Tenor Drum
  • Triangle


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Gloriana was commissioned by The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, for the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. Cast in three acts, the plot concerns the later years of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I and her relationship with Robert Deveraux, the Earl of Essex. Britten began work on the opera in 1952, and completed it by March 1953. The Courtly Dances are drawn from several places in the opera, primarily from Act 2.

- Program Note from Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music

Commercial Discography

State Ratings

  • Florida: VI
  • Louisiana: V
  • Maryland: VI
  • Michigan: Senior High AA
  • Oklahoma: V-A
  • South Carolina: VI
  • Texas: V. Complete


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Mid America Freedom Band (Kansas City, Mo.) (Lee Hartman, conductor) – 20 October 2019
  • Virginia Tech (Blacksburg) Wind Ensemble (Derek Shapiro, conductor) – 13 October 2019
  • Massachusetts Youth Wind Ensemble (Boston) (Michael Mucci, conductor)– 15 May 2019
  • College-Conservatory of Music (Cincinnati, Ohio) Wind Ensemble (Thomas Gamboa, conductor) – 28 March 2019
  • Shenandoah Conservatory (Winchester, Va.) Concert Band (Keith Taylor, conductor) - 24 April 2018
  • University of Minnesota (Minneapolis) Wind Ensemble (J. Nick Smith, conductor) – 12 December 2017
  • University of Illinois (Champaign) Wind Symphony (Stephen G. Peterson, conductor) – 24 September 2017
  • University of Cincinnati (Ohio) College-Conservatory of Music Wind Orchestra (Terrence Milligan, conductor) – 12 April 2017
  • California State University, Northridge, Wind Ensemble (Lawerence Stoffel, conductor) – 29 November 2016
  • Foothill Symphonic Winds (Los Altos, Calif.) (David Bruce Adams, conductor) - 7 June 2015
  • University of Michigan Symphony Band (Dustin Barr, conductor) - 10 April 2015

Works for Winds by this Composer


  • Britten, B.; Bach, J. (1995). The Courtly Dances: From Act 2 of the Opera Gloriana, op. 53 [score]. Boosey & Hawkes: [New York?].
  • Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music. "Courtly Dances from Gloriana." Accessed 5 April 2015
  • Worzbyt, Jason. "Courtly Dances." In Teaching Music through Performance in Band. Volume 9, edit. & comp. by Richard Miles, 512-518. Chicago: GIA Publications, 2013.