Please DONATE to help with maintenance and upkeep of the Wind Repertory Project!

Symphony No. 2 (Pierson)

From Wind Repertory Project
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Brooke Pierson

Brooke Pierson

Subtitle: West Point

General Info

Year: 2021
Duration: c. 24:25
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Taurus Music
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $400.00   |   Score Only (print) - $100.00


1. Prelude – 4:15
2. March – 4:40
3. In Memoriam – 8:05
4. Trophy Point – 6:05


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe (div.)
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III (III div.)
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III (I div.)
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II
Bass Trombone
Tuba (div.)
Percussion (4-5 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tam-tam
  • Tom-tom
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The symphony takes us on a journey through post, musically reflecting on stops like Trophy Point and the West Point Cemetery.

Commissioned by West Point Band

- Program Note from publisher

One of my favorite forms of writing is long-form: the symphony. Writing in long-form allows for themes and motif to breathe, and for the ideas to become fully developed. One of the first pieces I ever wrote, using a bootleg version of Finale 1995 obtained on a floppy disk from my brother, was a symphonic work. Since then, I have written for many ensembles sizes and lengths of pieces but find nothing as rewarding or satisfying as is writing a symphony.

My first complete symphony as a more seasoned composer, Annapurna, gave me confidence that I could, indeed, still write long form and it spurred creativity and passion. Out of that work came material that I had used in several other pieces, including a piece for brass ensemble Unsung Heroes which helped forge my relationship with conductor Tod Addison of West Point.

In late 2018, I received a message from Tod about his interest in some of my music. To his credit, he is always searching for new composers and new music as he happened upon my material. At that time, I had recently resurrected my Concerto for Tuba and Wind Orchestra, and Tod had taken an interest. In February of 2020, the West Point Band premiered the work, roughly a month after they gave the second performance of Unsung Heroes. For the premiere of the concerto, my wife and I visited Highland Falls, New York and stayed at the historic Thayer Hotel at the entrance of West Point Academy. It was February 22nd and 65 degrees, and we were able to hike on the hills along the Hudson, walk the historic campus, and learn of its history as we toured, both becoming enamored with West Point and struck with an immense sense of respect for the academy.

About eight months later, Tod began inquiring about the prospect of my writing a symphony for West Point. I had just finished my first symphony roughly 12 months earlier and was ready to write another; after all, long-form is my favorite. The first material I wrote was from the 3rd movement, sketched with pencil/paper, and this was written almost immediately. The rest came about mostly in the month of May (2021) as my time was split from teaching remote and in person due to the covid 19 pandemic.

Symphony No. 2 "West Point" is a bit shorter than my first symphony (by about two minutes) and shares some key characteristics. Found throughout the piece are segments of motif, woven and layered, so that each moment feels connected to the last while still giving each one a sense of independence. Our goal is that each movement can be performed separately or together, in hope that the West Point Academy can be celebrated in music often.

Prelude. This movement functions almost like an overture. Throughout is material found in each of the four movements, in particular the vibrant fanfare and shimmering sections (4th movement) and the slow melodic material (3rd movement).

March. A quasi-march and fanfare, this moment contains all original material. The dark opening fanfare represents danger and intensity while the classic march material in the second section demonstrates a sense of tradition (after all, how can one write a piece for West Point and not include something that feels like a march). A composer I highly value for his contribution to Americana is Aaron Copland, and the end of the light-hearted march section is designed to elicit that feeling.

In Memoriam. Slow, introspective, but laced with positivity and hope, this movement honors the sacrifice of those who served. This piece is inspired by my walk through the West Point cemetery.

Trophy Point. This is the location of the Battle Monument and has been the site of past West Point graduations. Overlooking the Hudson River and overseeing much of the campus, this spot is where I first visited on campus. The fourth movement is ultimately about hope and connects each of the prior three movements.

- Program Note by composer


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works