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Stars and Stripes Forever, The (arr. Wayland)

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John Philip Sousa

John Philip Sousa (arr. Newton Wayland)


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General Info

Year: 1897 / <2006
Duration:
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Unknown
Cost: Score and Parts - Unknown


Instrumentation

(Needed - please join the WRP if you can help.)


Errata

None discovered thus far.


Program Notes

Wayland’s arrangement of America’s national march is a unique and playful take on the original. The program notes about the piece state, “Modulating from key to key, odd-meter measures, and a tuba/piccolo duet on the piccolo solo, all make for a very interesting encore."

- Program Note from publisher


Sousa consistently stated that this march was divinely inspired and was born of homesickness. In his autobiography, Marching Along, he provides the details of its creation after he had received a cablegram in Italy that his manager, David Blakely, had died:

“Aboard the Teutonic, as it steamed out of the harbor on my return from Europe in 1896, came one of the most vivid incidents of my career. As I paced the deck, absorbed in thought, suddenly I began to sense the rhythmic beat of a band playing within my brain. It kept on ceaselessly, playing, playing, playing. Throughout the whole tense voyage, that imaginary band continued to unfold the same themes, echoing and reechoing the most distinct melody. I did not transfer a note of that music to paper while I was on the steamer, but when we reached the shore, I set down the measures that my brain-band had been playing for me, and not a note of it has ever changed. The composition is known the world over as The Stars and Stripes Forever and is probably my most popular march.” (By permission of John Philip Sousa, Inc., New York City)

Paul Bierley states that The Stars and Stripes Forever is “by far the most popular march ever written, and its popularity is by no means limited to the United States.” A ten-year international march popularity survey confirms Bierley’s statement. The universal appeal of Sousa’s march is illustrated by an article in The New York Times by Harold Schonberg which tells of a tour to China by Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra in 1973. After sitting politely but stonily through a program which ranged from Beethoven to Copland, the orchestra struck up The Stars and Stripes. “All of a sudden electricity permeated the hall. Faces broke into smiles; feet began tapping; there was a general air of understanding and happiness. Maybe,... (it) really is the greatest piece of music ever written by an American. In any case, it has made more friends for America than any other piece of music...”

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band


Media

None discovered thus far.


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


Performances

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Works for Winds by this Composer

Adaptable Music


All Wind Works


Resources