Roman Carnival Overture (tr Patterson)

From Wind Repertory Project
Hector Berlioz

Hector Berlioz (trans. Merlin Patterson)

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General Info

Year: 1834 / 1844 /
Duration: c. 8:40
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Orchestra
Publisher: Merlin Patterson
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $260.00

N.B. Merlin Patterson offers two versions of this work, one in the original key of A major, one in B-flat. They are priced the same.


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None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This overture is based on themes taken from Berlioz's unsuccessful opera Benvenuto Cellini (1838). The opening salterello (fast Italian dance) from act two and Cellini's andante love theme from act one are two of the prominently featured melodies. The overture was premiered in Paris in 1844, with Berlioz conducting, and so pleased the crowd it had to be repeated. It is still very popular.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band

The overture is a stand-alone concert piece for symphony orchestra but is made up of material and themes from Berlioz's first opera, the technically challenging and rarely performed Benvenuto Cellini. The opera on which this overture is based was born of inspiration garnered from two years of study in Italy. This sojourn was a result of Berlioz's winning the prestigious Prix de Rome, a French scholarship for students of the arts, including categories in painting, sculpture, architecture, engraving, and musical composition. The prize included a five-year stipend and required the winner to spend two years studying in Italy. It is our good fortune that Berlioz took the lovely melodies of the opera and made a condensed version of sorts in the Le carnival romain, else some very lovely melodies might be lost to obscurity.

- Program Note by Matthew Cohen for Open Call

Le carnaval romain, ouverture pour orchestre (Roman Carnival Overture), Op. 9, was composed in 1844 and first performed at the Salle Herz, Paris, on 3 February 1844. A stand-alone overture intended for concert performance, made up of material and themes from Berlioz's opera Benvenuto Cellini, including some music from the opera's carnival scene – hence the overture's title. It is scored for large orchestra, is in the key of A major, and features a prominent and famous solo for the cor anglais.

- Program Note from Wikipedia


State Ratings

  • Louisiana: V
  • Texas: IV. Complete


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Works for Winds by This Composer