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Satiric Dances

From Wind Repertory Project
Norman Dello Joio

Norman Dello Joio

General Info

Year: 1975
Duration: 7:50
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Associated Music Publishers
Cost: Score & Parts - $75.00   |   Score Only - $10.50


1. Allegro pesante - 2:05
2. Adagio mesto - 3:05
3. Allegro spumante - 2:15


Full Score
Eb Soprano Clarinet
Bb Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
Eb Alto Clarinet
Bb Bass Clarinet
Alto Saxophone I-II
Tenor Saxophone
Baritone Saxophone
Trumpet (in Bb) I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III-IV
Bass Trombone
Percussion (5 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Cymbal (suspended, crash)
  • Glockenspiel
  • Snare Drum
  • Tambourine
  • Tubular Bells
  • Woodblock
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Satiric Dances was commissioned by the Concord Band, Concord, Massachusetts, to commemorate the Bicentennial of April 19, 1775, the day that launched the American War for Independence. At the North Bridge, in what is now Minute Man National Historical Park, the first ordered firing upon British Regulars by Colonial militiamen resulted in "the shot heard `round the world." Dello Joio, then Dean of Boston University's School for the Arts, agreed to do the commission, but stipulated it would be based on a piece he had used as background music for a comedy by Aristophanes. The most famous comic dramatist of ancient Greece, Aristophanes was born an Athenian citizen about 445 BC. His plays commented on the political and social issues of fifth century Athens and frequently employed satire.

The first dance movement is annotated as allegro pesante. The brass entry signifies the importance of the work, but the brisk tempo keeps the simplicity of "peasantry" from being ponderous. Taking a much slower adagio mesto tempo, the second dance begins with a melancholy tune from the flutes and low brass. The movement has light and delicate features that are quite exposed. Its central theme might evoke thoughts of a dance in a meadow that eventually reverts into a more solemn theme. Without a break in the music, the final movement is introduced by rolls from the snare drum. The tempo is indicated as allegro spumante and is the fastest of the composition. The quick turns and dynamics evoke images of the objects that were the titles of Aristophanes' plays: Clouds, Wasps, and Birds.

- Program Notes from

Commercial Discography

None discovered thus far.

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Parkland College (Champaign, Ill.) Wind Ensemble (Jonathan Beckett, conductor) - 20 October 2019
  • University of Illinois (Champaign) University Band (Barry L. Houser, conductor) - 25 April 2019
  • State University of New York, Fredonia, Concert Band (Ray Stewart, conductor) – 18 April 2019
  • University of Georgia (Athens) Hodgson Symphonic Band (Michael Robinson, conductor) – 5 April 2019
  • O’Fallon (Ill.) Township High School Symphonic Band (Philip Carter, conductor) – 15 February 2019
  • University of North Georgia (Gainesville) Wind Ensemble (J. Ashley Jarrell, conductor) – 21 February 2019
  • VanderCook College of Music (Chicago) Symphonic Band (Stacey Larson Dolan, conductor) - 21 December 2018 (2018 Midwest Clinic)
  • Peninsula Symphonic Band (Palo Alto, Calif.) (G. Mancho Gonzalez, conductor) – 18 November 2018
  • Los Angeles (Calif.) Symphonic Winds (Stephen Piazza, conductor) – 7 October 2018
  • Mercyhurst D’Angelo University (Erie, Penn.) Wind Ensemble (Scott Meier, conductor) – 30 September 2018
  • Ohio University (Athens) Symphonic Band (Richard Suk, conductor) – 27 September 2018
  • Santa Fe College (Gainesville, Fla.) Wind Ensemble (Steve Bingham, conductor) - 27 September 2018
  • Skidmore Community Concert Band (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) (Milton Lee, conductor) – 15 April 2018
  • Texas Tech University (Lubbock) Raider Band (Skye Brown, conductor) – 27 March 2018
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, Minn.) Wind Symphony (James Patrick Miller, conductor) - 10 March 2018
  • Ithaca (N.Y.) College Concert Band (Brian Diller, conductor) – 1 March 2018
  • Wartburg College (Waverly, Iowa) Symphonic Band (Craig A. Hancock, conductor) – 3 February 2018
  • Watchung Hills Regional High School Wind Ensemble (Paul McCullen, conductor) – 7 December 2017
  • Central Michigan University (Mount Pleasant) Symphony Band (James Batcheller, conductor) – 5 December 2017
  • High School Concert Band [Interlochen, Mich.] (Frederick Fennell, conductor) - 1 August 1986

Works for Winds by this Composer