Please DONATE to help with maintenance and upkeep of the Wind Repertory Project!

Niagara Falls

From Wind Repertory Project
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Michael Daugherty

Michael Daugherty

General Info

Year: 1997
Duration: c. 9:45
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Peermusic Classical
Cost: Score and Parts - Rental   |   Score Only - $29.95


Full Score
C Piccolo
English Horn
Bassoon I-II-III
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
Euphonium I-II
Tuba I-II
String Bass
Percussion I-VI, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bell Tree
  • Bongos
  • Chimes
  • Claves
  • Conga
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Marimba
  • Ratchet
  • Ship Bell (medium)
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Triangle (3)
  • Vibraphone
  • Vibra-slap
  • Whip
  • Wind Chimes
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Niagara Falls, a gateway between Canada and the United States, is a mecca for honeymooners and tourists who come to visit one of the most scenic waterfalls in the world. The Niagara River also generates electricity for towns on both sides of the border, where visitors are lured into haunted houses, motels, wax museums, candy stores, and tourist traps, as well as countless stores that sell "Niagara Falls" postcards, T-shirts, and souvenirs.

This composition is another souvenir, inspired by my many trips to Niagara Falls. It is a ten-minute musical ride over the Niagara River with an occasional stop at a haunted house or wax museum along the way. Its principal musical motive is a haunting chromatic phrase of four tones corresponding to the syllables of Niagara Falls, and repeated in increasingly gothic proportions. A pulsing rhythm in the timpani and lower brass creates an undercurrent of energy to give an electric charge to the second motive, introduced in musical canons by the upper brass. The saxophones and clarinets introduce another level of counterpoint, in a bluesy riff with a film noir edge. My composition is a meditation on the American Sublime.

- Program Note from publisher

Niagara Falls (1997) was commissioned by the University of Michigan Symphonic Band in honor of its one hundredth anniversary and is dedicated to its conductor, H. Robert Reynolds. The work was premiered by that ensemble on October 4, 1997, at “Bandarama,” conducted by H. Robert Reynolds at Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

- Program Notes from Illinois State University Wind Symphony concert program, 28 October 2016


State Ratings

  • Louisiana: V
  • North Carolina: Masterworks (play all)


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Miami (Coral Gables) Frost Symphonic Winds (Robert Carnochan, conductor) - 5 March 2023
  • O'Fallon Township (Ill.) High School Wind Ensemble (Melissa Gustafson-Hinds, conductor; Phil Wilhelm, harp) - 20 December 2022 (2022 Midwest Clinic)
  • Rutgers University (New Brunswick, N.J.) Symphonic Winds (Todd Nichols, conductor) - 9 December 2021
  • University of Oklahoma (Norman) Symphony Band (Don Linn, conductor) - 22 November 2021
  • University of North Texas (Denton) Wind Ensemble (Daniel Cook, conductor) – 16 November 2021
  • State University of New York, Fredonia, Wind Symphony (Donna Dolson, conductor) – 14 November 2019
  • University of Nebraska (Lincoln) Wind Ensemble (Anthony Falcone, conductor) – 22 April 2019
  • University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa) Symphonic Band (Randall O. Coleman, conductor) – 26 February 2019
  • Cy-Fair High School Band (Cypress, Tex.) (Mark Veenstra, conductor; Alice Spero Keene, harp) - 19 December 2018 (2018 Midwest Clinic)
  • University of Kansas (Lawrence) Symphonic Band (Matthew O. Smith, conductor) – 6 December 2018
  • University of Colorado Boulder Symphonic Band (Matthew Roeder, conductor) – 14 November 2018
  • University of Florida (Gainesville) Wind Symphony (David Waybright, conductor) – 8 November 2018
  • Ball State University (Muncie, Ind.) Symphony Band (Stuart Ivey, conductor) – 26 October 2018
  • Texas Tech University (Lubbock) Symphonic Band (Eric Allen, conductor) – 23 October 2018
  • Belmont University (Nashville, Tenn.) Wind Ensemble (Barry Kraus, conductor) – 5 October 2018
  • University of Minnesota (Minneapolis) Wind Ensemble (Emily Threinen, conductor) – 2 May 2018

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works


  • Daugherty, M. (2003). Niagara Falls: For Symphonic Band [score]. Peermusic: New York.
  • Michael Daugherty website.
  • Miles, Richard B. 2000. Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 3. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 718-721.