Solemn Music, A

From Wind Repertory Project
Virgil Thomson

Virgil Thomson

General Info

Year: 1949
Duration: c. 7:00
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: G. Schirmer Inc.
Cost: Score and Parts - Rental


Full Score
C Piccolo I-II
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
Cornet I-II-III
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Baritone I-II
Tuba I-II
String Bass
Timpani I-II
Percussion (4 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Field Drum
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tam-Tam


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

A Solemn Music (1949), written for band and later orchestrated, was composed in a rather conservative atonal idiom. Written in memory of [Gertrude] Stein and the painter Christian Bérard, it is one of Thomson's most powerful works.

- Gale Encyclopedia of Biography

This work was commissioned by the League of Composers for the Goldman Band and first performed at the season's opening concert of this organization on June 17, 1949, in Central Park, New York City, the composer conducting.

- Program Note from score


State Ratings

  • Alabama: Class A
  • California: VI Class AA
  • Louisiana: IV
  • Massachusetts: V


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Girsberger, Russ. Percussion Assignments for Band & Wind Ensemble: Volume 2 L-Z. Galesville, MD: Meredith Music Publications, 2004, 308. Print.
  • Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music. "Virgil Thomson." Accessed 24 October 2018
  • Nichols, Todd, and William Berz. "Virgil Thomson's A Solemn Music and A Joyful Fugue: An Overview and Analysis." WASBE Journal, Vol. 26/2020, pp. 40-51. Print.