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Symphonic Songs for Band

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Robert Russell Bennett

Robert Russell Bennett


General Info

Year: 1958
Duration: c. 14:05
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Hal Leonard
Cost: Score and Parts - $80.00   |   Score Only - $10.00


Movements

1. Serenade - 4:25
2. Spiritual - 4:55
3. Celebration - 4:40


Instrumentation

Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II (Oboe II doubles English Horn)
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet Solo-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
B-flat Cornet Solo-I-II-III
B-flat Trumpet I-II
F Horn I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Bass Trombone
Euphonium (Bass Clef & Treble Clef)
Tuba
String Bass
Timpani (optional 5th drum as tom-tom)
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bells
  • Bird Whistle
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Slide Whistle
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Tom-tom
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


Errata

None discovered thus far.


Program Notes

To most music fans, Robert Russell Bennett remains best known for his musical theater scoring and arranging. For decades, Bennett was Broadway’s pre-eminent orchestrator, scoring all or part of nearly 300 musicals, including Anything Goes, Kiss Me Kate, Annie Get Your Gun, My Fair Lady, Oklahoma, The Sound of Music, and other immortal works. Bennett’s second work for band, the Symphonic Songs, is in three movements, each depicting a song form and presented in Bennett’s typical charming Americana style.

- Program Note by San Luis Obispo Wind Orchestra concert program, 14 May 2011


Symphonic Songs was commissioned by the Kappa Kappa Psi Band Fraternity and premiered by the National Intercollegiate Band at the 1957 national convention in Salt Lake City. The work is as much a suite of dances or scenes as songs, deriving their names from the tendency of the principal parts to sing out a fairly diatonic tune against whatever rhythm develops in the middle instruments. The Serenade has the feeling of strumming, from which the title is obtained. Otherwise it bears little resemblance to the serenades of Mozart. The Spiritual might possibly strike the listener as being unsophisticated enough to justify its title, but in performance this movement sounds far simpler than it really is. The Celebration recalls an old-time county fair with cheering throngs (in the woodwinds), a circus act or two, and the inevitable mule race.

- Program Note by Program Notes for Band


Commercial Discography


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


Performances

To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Southern Adventist University (Collegedale, Tenn.) Wind Symphony (Doug Penner, conductor) – 15 February 2020
  • University of Nebraska (Lincoln) Symphonic Band (Anthony Falcone, conductor) – 10 December 2019
  • Southwest Civic Winds (Durango, Colo.) (Thomas O'Neal, conductor) – 10 November 2019
  • California State University, Stanislaus, Wind Ensemble (Stuart Sims, conductor) – 5 December 2019
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge) Wind Ensemble (Fred Harris, Jr.) – 25 October 2019
  • Treasure Coast Wind Ensemble (Vero Beach, Fla.) (Colbert Page Howell, conductor) – 7 June 2019
  • California State University, Los Angeles Wind Ensemble (Emily Moss, conductor) – 8 May 2019
  • Brock University (St. Catharines, Ont.) Wind Ensemble (Zoltan Kalman , conductor)– 4 December 2018
  • University of Florida (Gainesville) Symphonic Band (Archie G. Birkner IV, conductor) – 29 November 2018
  • Virginia Grand Military Band (Alexandria) (Loras John Schissel, conductor) – 17 November 2018
  • University of Wisconsin-Parkside Wind Ensemble (Laura Rexroth, conductor) - 26 April 2018
  • Davis (Calif.) High School Symphonic Band (Thomas Slabaugh II, conductor)– 16 March 2018
  • State University of New York, Potsdam, Symphonic Band (Brian K. Doyle, conductor) – 28 February 2018
  • Kings Park Concert Band (Fairfax, Va.) (Rich Bergman, conductor) – 5 November 2017
  • Ohlone Wind Orchestra (Fremont, Calif.) (Tony Clements, conductor) – 29 October 2017
  • Jackson (Miss.) State University Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Lowell Hollinger, conductor) – 28 February 2017
  • Vassar College (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) and Community Wind Ensemble (James Osborn, conductor) – 13 November 2016
  • Naperville (Ill.) North High School (Daniel Moore, conductor) – 28 April 2016
  • Michigan State University (East Lansing) Wind Symphony (Kevin L. Sedatole, conductor) – 28 April 2016
  • California State University, Sacramento, Wind Ensemble (Robert Halseth, conductor) - 15 April 2016 (2016 San Joaquin Valley (Calif.) Concert Band Invitational)
  • Los Angeles Symphonic Winds (Stephen Piazza, conductor) – 21 February 2016


Works for Winds by this Composer


References

  • Bennett, R. (1958). Symphonic Songs: For Band [score]. Chappell: New York.
  • Miles, Richard B. 2000. Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 3. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 427-434.
  • Smith, Norman E. (2002). Program Notes for Band. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 54