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Pride of the Clipper

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Brian Balmages

Brian Balmages

General Info

Year: 2020
Duration: c. 4:00
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: FJH Music
Cost: Score and Parts - $90.00   |   Score Only - $8.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
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:

  • Anvil
  • Bass Drum
  • Bells
  • Chimes
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Marimba
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Tam-Tam
  • Triangle
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The Mid-Shore Community Band serves the middle eastern shore of Maryland, located along the Chesapeake Bay. Included in this area is the charming town of St. Michaels (a favourite location of mine, and a nationally recognised vacation destination). St. Michaels was established in the early 1800s and achieved great success in the shipbuilding industry, especially during the war of 1812. One of the iconic ships produced there was a schooner that came to be known as the Baltimore Clipper. These ships were renowned for their speed and ability to outrun pirates, evade enemy blockades, and more. The clipper remains an iconic name in the Baltimore area and the surrounding area.

Pride of the Clipper takes the listener back to the early days of St. Michaels, combining the joy of living on the water with the industrial sounds of a shipyard. The sound of ship bells interact with the rhythmic banging on metal to immerse the audience in the sounds of a typical St. Michaels morning. The music captures the spirit of these early days while also celebrating the vibrant town it is today. Eventually, the music takes on a more aggressive and sinister character as it portrays a clipper racing to avoid a pirate ship. The intensity rises until the clipper pulls away, and all the preceding tension melts away into a glorious celebration.

Pride of the Clipper was commissioned by the Mid-Shore Community Band in Maryland. Many thanks go out to conductor E.J. Oesterle and Donna Ewing, who chaired the commissioning committee.

- Program note by composer


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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