Fanfare and Dance Variations

This is my first major completed composition, a true “Opus 1” (save, perhaps, for a few chamber pieces). I completed it prior to having any formal composition study, and is the result of my awakening to classical symphonic music as an expressive avenue for me. It is a tone poem. My original symphonic influences are worn on its sleeve. As a percussionist/timpanist I was first inspired by the Late Romantic canon (Strauss, Tchaikovsky, Dvorak, etc.) and early 20th Century masters (Ravel, Debussy, Stravinsky, Bartok, etc.), as well as the wind ensemble music I was even more immersed in. As youthful compositions commonly go for all composers, it changes themes frequently and development is negligible. Yet I pursued one idea: a chorale followed by a fast percussive dance pattern from which other melodic themes emerge. The “dance variations” are in the form of returns to the dance patterns, sometimes at a slow tempo. Finally it drives to an explosion of sorts out of which emerges a timpani ostinato that builds and aims for a triumphant return of the chorale.

It was not until COVID, sometime in 2020, that I finally placed this score into computer notation and created a MIDI recording. By so doing, I was able to clean up a few terrible orchestrational decisions. I consider the work in shape for performance for anyone who wishes to do so.


3*3*3*2 4331 Timp+4 Str