Diptych for Brass Quintet and Concert Band

From Wind Repertory Project
Gunther Schuller

Gunther Schuller

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General Info

Year: 1971
Duration: c. 8:00
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Associated Music Publishers, through Wise Music Classical
Cost: Score and Parts – Rental.


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None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Although the word "diptych" originally referred to two-panel altar paintings, it has in our century come to be used in a secular sense for two-part paintings or musical forms. especially if the material of the two parts is interrelated….

The two parts, one slow, the other fast, are played with only a slightly pause in between. The first part is essentially static, as compared to the more rhythmic second part, which experiences several stages of acceleration achieved by means of a device termed “metric modulation.” Both sections of the work are very much concerned with exploring (a) the rich sonority possibilities of the modern concert band in a truly contemporary language, and (b) the musical and sonoric relationships -- through contrast as well as imitation -- between the solo quintet and the band. In Part Two, the opening material is stated three times (almost in a Rondo form), but it leads to different conclusions each time, finally leading to a jazz-influenced climactic ending.

Diptych was commissioned by the New York Brass Quintet and premiered at Cornell University in March, 1964, by the Quintet and the Cornell Concert Band.

- Program Note by composer


State Ratings

  • Louisiana: V
  • Virginia: VI


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  • Cornell University (Ithaca, N.Y.) Concert Band (New York Brass Quintet) – March 1964 Premiere Performance*

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • The Gunther Schuller Society Accessed 23 June 2023
  • Schuller, G. (1971). Diptych, for Brass Quintet and Concert Band [score]. Associated Music Publishers: New York, N.Y.