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Crown Imperial (arr Noble)

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William Walton

William Walton (arr. Noble)

General Info

Year: 1937 / 2014
Duration: c. 9:30
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $145.00   |   Score Only (print) - $15.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
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
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-III-IV
Trombone I-II
Bass Trombone
String Bass
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Snare Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This work was commissioned by the British Broadcasting Corp. for the coronation of King George VI on May 12, 1937. The BBC Orchestra has premiered the work (with many composer recalls) six days earlier. The title is taken from the poem In Honour of the City of London by William Dunbar (1465-1520) and the quotation "In beauty bearing the Crown Imperial," was quoted by Walton at the head of his original score.

The enormous strength and sense of tonality of this brilliant coronation march come from the Tudor choral style which Walton knew so well. The first section has a quietly rhythmic opening which gradually builds to a splendid climax. A broad and stately melody, typically English in its majestic sonority, then provides the contrast to the first section, and the two themes are repeated and varied in the march to the finale.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band

The music begins with a woodwind choir carrying a syncopated, energetic melody, which then grows into a proud and vibrant tune in the brass and recurs throughout the work. Between these recurrences are lyrical sections taken at a more relaxed tempo, to be played in a grandiose and stately manner. The robust melodic themes intend to convey a sense of nationalistic pride that is brought to fruition in the last, and most impactful, minute of the piece. Crown Imperial is a classic march that celebrates a modern era of the British Crown, beginning in the early 20th century.

- Program Notes by Hannah Hadden and Zia Leigh for the Marcus High School Wind Symphony

Crown Imperial was originally composed for the coronation of King Edward VIII. However, Edward abdicated his throne and Crown Imperial was performed at the coronation of King George VI instead. Crown Imperial was also chosen to be performed at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 and as the recessional piece in the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in 2011.

- Program Note from Wikipedia


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of North Texas (Denton) Wind Ensemble (Nicholas E. Williams, conductor) - 27 September 2016

Works for Winds by This Composer