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Legend of the Omaha

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Patrick J. Burns

Patrick Burns

General Info

Year: 2011
Duration: c. 2:00
Difficulty: I (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Daehn Publications
Cost: Score and Parts - $60.00   |   Score - $5.00


Full Score
Oboe (Flute II)
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I
Tenor Saxophone (Baritone T.C.)
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F
Percussion I-IV, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Cymbals (suspended)
  • Glockenspiel (Orchestral Bells)
  • Sleigh Bells
  • Tambourine
  • Snare Drum
  • Triangle


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Legend of the Omaha is based on a Native American melody entitled "How the Rabbit Lost his Tail". This tune is one of dozens of songs found in A Study of Omaha Indian Music, by Alice E. Fletcher, published in 1893. Of the melody on which this modern setting is based, Fletcher writes:

"These are bits of songs which occur in the myths that are told during the winter days and evenings; they are generally attributed to the animals who are so often the heroes of these tales. These melodies are sung by the women to amuse the children who catch [the animals] readily and in their childish way dramatize that portion of the myth wherein the song occurs, singing the melody with childish fervor."

In Native American culture, there are many, many variations on the legend of how Rabbit, who once had a long, billowy tail, wound up with a short and stubby one. It seems that Fox is somehow implicated in most of these retellings. To hear a wonderful version which you can incorporate directly into your teaching, visit YouTube and type "Rich Heape" in the search field. Mr. Heape is one of the foremost Native American storytellers, and he offers a beautiful and entertaining rendition of this myth in his video Tales of Wonder. It is 100% kid-friendly and can be played in the classroom without reservation.


(Needed - please join the WRP if you can help.)

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Horace Mann Middle School Band (Kimberly Plautz, conductor) - 3 May 2011

Works for Winds by This Composer