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Washington Greys

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Claudio Grafulla

Claudio Grafulla (arr. Loras John Schissel)

This title is also spelled "Washington Grays."

General Info

Year: c. 1856 / 2002
Duration: c. 4:20
Difficulty: III 1/2 (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: C.L. Barnhouse
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $65.00   |   Score Only (print) - $6.00


Full Score
C Piccolo/Flute I
Flute II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I
E-flat Alto Saxophone II/E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Field Drum
  • Snare Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Dedicated to Jon Newsom, Chief of the Music Division, Library of Congress

- Program Note from score

Grafulla's great march has been called a masterpiece, a band classic, as well as the prototype of the concert march. It takes a special composition to get such rave reviews, and this one delivers. With elements of both the Italian and German marches, the composer strikes a fine balance between technique and melody. Schissel provides here an impressive setting for modern concert band instrumentation.

- Program Note by publisher

The best-known of the many compositions and arrangements for military band by Claudio S. Grafulla that he wrote between 1838-1870, the march Washington Greys is still played by bands throughout the world. Washington Greys was composed sometime prior to 1852 for the 8th Regiment, New York National Guard, and is considered one of the finest American contributions to military band literature. Its actual composition date is clouded in obscurity, as no editions of this march published in either band or piano versions prior to 1900 exist.

The 8th New York was created on 1 May 1784, when a company of militia artillery was organized in New York City by Capt. Jacob Sebring. After marching in George Washington's inaugural parade on 30 April 1789 the company adopted the name "Washington Grays." On 22 March 1809 this company became part of Maj. Martin Boerum's battalion of artillery. This later became part of the 4th Regiment of New York State Artillery, which was redesignated the 3rd Regiment of New York State Artillery in 1812. During the War of 1812 (1812-1815) the regiment performed fortress duty in and around New York City. The regiment continued in the militia following the war, performing routine duties during emergencies and riot. The regiment its present designation on 27 July 1847, when, in consequence of a major reorganization of the state militia, it was re-designated the 8th Regiment of Infantry.

During the Civil War the 8th New York was active militia on three occasions, for a total of seven months.

The earliest known arrangement of Washington Greys is found in the Manchester (NH) Brass Band hand manuscript band books (set 1), added ca. 1856, from which this edition was arranged. Yet another band arrangement of this piece can be found in the hand manuscript band books of the 26th North Carolina Band located in the Moravian Music Foundation Music Archives, although it is hard to determine the date the composition was added to these books as they were also used for many years after the end of the Civil War.

- Program Note from Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music

Commercial Discography

None discovered thus far.


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by this Composer