Tallis Prelude, A

From Wind Repertory Project
Thomas Tallis

Thomas Tallis (arr. Douglas Akey)

General Info

Year: 1989
Duration: c. 3:40
Difficulty: II (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Queenwood Publications
Cost: Score and Parts - $52.00   |   Score Only - $6.50


Full Score
C Piccolo
B-flat Soprano 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
Cornets/Trumpets I-II-III
Horn in F I-II
Trombone I-II-III
Bass Trombone
String Bass
Percussion I-II, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bells
  • Chimes (optional)
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Triangle
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This adaptation is based on a melody in the Phrygian mode by the 16th century English composer Thomas Tallis.

- Program Note from publisher

A Talus Prelude is based on the same theme as Ralph Vaughan Williams’ piece, Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Talus. The theme in Akey’s work, as in Vaughan Williams’, is presented in its original mode, Phrygian. When Akey writes material derivative of the original melody or when he writes original themes, he generally uses a major tonality. We hear Tallis’s theme introduced in almost hymn-like manner by the low instruments. During this slow introduction to the piece, the rest of the band gradually hints at the more lively motifs to come.

As with Akey’s other works based on Renaissance themes, A Susato Prelude and A Praetorius Prelude, we find in A Talus Prelude the playful juxtaposition of 16th century sounds with modern harmonies and rhythms. We hear major next to Phrygian, polyrhythms and hemiola next to standard meters, somber and cheerful melodies side by side. The result is a light-hearted, engaging work appropriate for advanced junior high as well as young high school groups.

- Program Note by Nancy Moser for the Joaquin Miller Middle School Advanced Band concert program, 21 February 2015


State Ratings

  • Alabama: Class C
  • Arkansas: II
  • Florida: III
  • Georgia: III
  • Kansas: III
  • Louisiana: II
  • Mississippi: III-A
  • North Carolina: III
  • Oklahoma: II-A
  • South Carolina: IV
  • Tennessee: III
  • Virginia: IV
  • West Virginia: II


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Akey, D. (1989). A Tallis Prelude [score]. Queenwood Publications: [s.l.]