Klaxon, The (arr Foster)

From Wind Repertory Project
Henry Fillmore

Henry Fillmore (ed. Robert Foster)

General Info

Year: 1930 / 2014
Duration: c. 2:55
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Carl Fischer
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $80.00; (digital) - $80.00   |   Score Only (print) - $12.00


Full Score
C Piccolo/Flute
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-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Bass Trombone
Percussion I-II, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Snare Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This well-known march was composed in 1930 by Henry Fillmore (1881- 1956) for the Cincinnati Auto Show and was dedicated “to the producers of the Klaxon Automobile Horns.” Cast in cut-time meter and marked simply “March tempo,” the work begins in E major and modulates to A major at the trio following well-established march tradition. The colorful trio begins with a legato melody featuring the horns, alto saxophones, and tenor saxophones and beautifully demonstrates Fillmore’s gift for creating interesting melodies and counter-melodies.

- Program Note from The Instrumentalist

Paul Bierley, who has written two interesting and scholarly books on John Philip Sousa and his music, culminated nearly a decade of research in 1982 with the publication of two valuable books on the life and music of Henry Fillmore. Among many sidelights, he learned that, contrary to oft-repeated stories, the pseudonym Gus Beans was not selected at random from a Cincinnati telephone book; the Crosley March has nothing to do with a compact car; and there was another Ohio composer whose real name happened to be the same as one of Fillmore's pseudonyms, Will Huff.

Stories of a connection between a car horn and The Klaxon March were more factual. Composed in 1929 and published the next year, the march (subtitled March of the Automobiles) was written for the Cincinnati Automobile Show which began at the Music Hall in January 1930. Fillmore also invented a new instrument for the occasion called a klaxophone. It consisted of 12 automobile horns, mounted on a table and powered by an automobile battery. Like Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture cannons, the klaxophone was a bit noisy.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Iowa (Iowa City) Concert Band (Eric Bush, conductor) - 6 April 2022
  • Cleveland (Ohio) Youth Wind Symphony Group II (Melissa Lichtler, conductor) - 24 November 2019 (Severance Hall, Cleveland)
  • Indiana University at South Bend Wind Symphony / Twin Cities Concert Band (Dennis Gamble, conductor) - 30 March 2019
  • Lee University (Cleveland, Tenn.) Wind Ensemble (Winona Holsinger, conductor) – 16 March 2016
  • Montrose (Colo.) Community Band – 2015

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

  • Courage (Flex instrumentation) (arr. Clark) (1919/2003/2012)
  • His Honor March (Flex instrumentation) (arr. Clark) (1934/2014)

All Wind Works