Isle of Calypso, The

From Wind Repertory Project
Robert W. Smith

Robert W. Smith

This work is the third movement of the composer's Symphony No. 2, The Odyssey.

General Info

Year: 2001
Duration: c. 4:27
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Alfred Publishing
Cost: Score and Parts - $65.00   |   Score Only - $9.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
English Horn
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Percussion I-II-III-IV, including:

  • Chimes
  • Clock Effect
  • Gong
  • Hand Bells (optional)
  • Helium Tank
  • Ocean Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tam-Tam
  • Tubular Bells
  • Wind Chimes


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This movement picks up with Odysseus lamenting as he is stranded on the strange island belonging to the goddess Calypso. Here, he can have anything he wants, even immortality, but he is never truly happy, as he remembers that he promised his beloved Penelope that they would grow old and die together. After a full year, Zeus and Hermes finally persuade the saddened Calypso to let Odysseus go free, so that he can once more rule Ithaca. This song captures the hero's woes during his time on the island.

This lyrical piece, the emotional climax of the symphony, opens with a special "clock" effect, to illustrate the passing of time, which can be achieved in various ways (knocking pieces of wood back and forth against each other, amplifying the sounds of a real antique clock, etc.). A prominent cymbal scrape leads to the entrance of an Ocean drum, while the piano begins the background theme. A mournful English horn solo introduces the main theme of the piece, and is soon joined by a euphonium duet and the rest of the winds. The song reaches a fake climax, before descending back into the original English horn melody. A flashback to the flute/horn duet in the first movement is featured, and this leads into the buildup of the band. Finally, the climax is reached, with soaring woodwind lines coupled by the brass/saxophone solo. The band joins together for a final melancholy re-statement of the English horn solo, which resumes after a dramatic fermata. Finally, this, too, lets go, and all that is left is the waves lapping on the shore (the ocean drum) the clock ticking away, and the tolls of the clock bells.

- Program Note from Wikipedia


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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