Scherzo alla Marcia

From Wind Repertory Project
Ralph Vaughan Williams

Ralph Vaughan Williams

This work is the second movement from the Symphony No. 8 in D Minor.

General Info

Year: 1956
Duration: c. 3:50
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - Rental


C Piccolo
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II-III (III optional)
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II
Horn in F I-II
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Trombone I-II-III


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Light, witty, and brief, Vaughan Williams’ Scherzo alla Marcia could be used to balance a more serious or lengthy work in the concert program. It is deceptively difficult; Vaughan Williams’s contrapunctal approach obscures the downbeat, and performers may find themselves playing what feels right rather than what is actually written. It is worthwhile to draw attention to the humorously abrupt ending in the program notes, because Vaughan Williams’ abstraction of time may catch audiences by surprise.

- Program notes from Great Music for Wind Band

Scherzo alla marcia is the second movement of Vaughan Williams’s Symphony No. 8. John Barbirolli conducted the premiere in Manchester, England, in 1956. The first movement is marked Fantasia (Variazioni senza tema). The Scherzo alla marcia is scored only for wind instruments, balancing the following Cavatina, which is for strings alone. The work closes with a bold and percussive Toccata. The Scherzo contains three themes and a fugato section, including a lively trio. Contrapuntal writing permeates the work, reminiscent of the music of his contemporary Paul Hindemith.

- Program Note from Baylor University Wind Ensemble concert program, 23 April 2021


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • East Carolina University (Greenville, N.C.) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (William Staub, conductor) - 20 September 2023
  • Chesapeake Bay Wind Ensemble (Hampton, Va.) (William Garlette, conductor) - 4 March 2023
  • Rowan University (Glassboro, N.J.) Wind Ensemble (Joseph Higgins, conductor) - 12 December 2022
  • Eastman School of Music (Rochester, N.Y.) Wind Orchestra (David Baker, conductor) - 3 May 2021
  • Baylor University (Waco, Tx.) Wind Ensemble (Stephen Heyde, conductor) - 23 April 2021
  • Central Washington University (Ellensburg) Wind Ensemble (Paul Bain, conductor) - 11 March 2021
  • Dallas (Tx.) Chamber Wind Ensemble (Reagan Brumley, conductor) - 3 January 2021
  • Louisiana State University (Baton Rouge) Wind Ensemble (Weston Lewis, conductor) - 15 December 2020
  • University of South Florida (Tampa) Wind Ensemble (Michael Lebrias, conductor) - 20 November 2020
  • Ball State University (Muncie, Ind.) Wind Ensemble (Thomas Caneva, conductor) - 13 November 2020
  • Oregon State University (Corvallis) Wind Ensemble (Erik Kar Jun, conductor) - 24 October 2020
  • University of Miami (Fla.) Frost Wind Ensemble (Robert Carnochan, conductor) - 18 October 2020
  • University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) Chamber Winds (Courtney Snyder, conductor) – 1 November 2019
  • Indiana University (Bloomington) Wind Ensemble (Rodney Dorsey, conductor) – 5 November 2019
  • Eastman School of Music (Rochester, N.Y.) Wind Ensemble (Mark Scatterday, conductor) – 1 April 2019
  • Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Mallory Thompson, conductor) – 1 February 2019
  • Missouri State University (Springfield) Wind Ensemble (Christopher Kelts, conductor) – 23 March 2018 (CBDNA 2018 Southwestern Conference, Houston, Texas)
  • University of Oregon (Eugene) Wind Ensemble (Rodney Dorsey, conductor) – 25 October 2017
  • McGill University (Montreal, Que.) Wind Symphony (Ben Kepes, conductor) – 25 January 2017
  • University of Texas (Austin) Wind Symphony (Scott Hanna, conductor) – 5 October 2016

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works