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La Pequeña Habana

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Todd Malicoate

Todd Malicoate

General Info

Year: 2008
Duration: c. 7:15
Difficulty: VII (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Todd Malicoate (contact at todd.malicoate at
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $200.00


1. Entrada del Sol
2. Calle Ocho
3. Transición -- una caminata en la calle
4. Hoy Como Ayer


Full Score
Flute I-II
Oboes I-II
Bassoon I-II
Contrabassoon (optional)
Bb Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
Bb Bass Clarinet
Eb Contra-Alto Clarinet (optional)
Bb Soprano Saxophone
Eb Alto Saxophone
Bb Tenor Saxophone
Eb Baritone Saxophone
Bb Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Bass Trombone
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III-IV-V, including:

  • Agogo Bells
  • Bongos
  • Cabasa
  • Claves
  • Conga Drums
  • Cowbell
  • Drumset
  • Glockenspiel (bells)
  • Marimba
  • Tambourine
  • Timbales
  • Timpani
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone
  • Woodblock


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The inspiration for La Pequeña Habana (Little Havana) was a two-day trip to that subdivision of Miami, Florida in the summer of 1988. 20 years later, I find the imagery of this place is still vivid in my mind. This composition is intended to evoke the memories of experiences in that place from waking up at sunrise to late night in a Latin dance club. The compositional techniques used in this work range from minimalism to big band jazz, but the entire composition is organized by a very basic set (0, 2, 5, 7). La Pequeña Habana consists of four major sections performed without pause between:

  • Entrada del Sol (Entrance of the Sun) reveals the intense activity of the morning in Little Havana. Shops opening, people scrambling to get to their jobs, Latin foods being prepared (with the wonderful smells!), and the sounds of street musicians warming up all translate musically to a busy (but organized) texture.
  • Calle Ocho translates literally as "Eighth Street," but is also the name of an annual Cuban festival. This section imitates an authentic Cuban band playing outdoors for enthusiastic passersby. This part uses a rhumba-like beat, with typical Latin rhythms and an abundance of Latin percussion instruments. The solos come fast and furious, and you can never tell who might take the next one!
  • Transición - una caminata en la calle (Transition - a walk in the street) follows the outdoor concert. One can walk all around the neighborhoods of Little Havana and observe the culture through the numerous paintings, sculpture, and memorial plaques. The experience is very rewarding and instills one with an appreciation of the hardships experienced by ancestors of the local residents.
  • Hoy Como Ayer is a Latin nightclub in Little Havana. Here, the energetic rhythms of authentic Cuban music is heard performed by some of the most prominent Latin music artists. I was fortunate to be able to "sit in" with a local band during my stay there...the experience was overwhelming and it was also quite a challenge to "keep up"! The writing here is very technically difficult and will provide a similar challenge to the ensemble performing this composition.

It is my hope that this piece will bring attention to the rich cultural heritage of Little Havana and possibly inspire a visit from some. I dedicate this work to the Oklahoma State Wind Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Joseph Missal, to whom I give my thanks for his generous mentorship for the last 20 years. Enjoy!

- Program Note by Todd Malicoate

Commercial Discography

None discovered thus far.

State Ratings

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Works for Winds by this Composer


None discovered thus far.