9th Grade Band...
The Olympics: A Centennial Celebration arranged by John Moss
This arrangement by John Moss includes four of the most famous works commissioned for and used by television broadcasts of the Olympics:
Bugler's Dream by Leo Arnaud was originally composed in 1958 for a completely unrelated project. However, ABC began using the music for the 1964 broadcasts from Innsbruck, Austria. Since then, it has reappeared on various television networks for subsequent games. The piece became so ingrained into the minds of Americans that composer John Williams created his own arrangement that he used alongside his original music created for the Olympics.
The three remaining works were composed by Williams. Olympic Fanfare and Theme was written for the 1984 Los Angeles games and commissioned by the organizing committee. This piece won a Grammy for Williams and became one of the most well-known musical themes of the Olympic Games, along with Arnaud's composition.
According to Williams, "The Olympic Spirit was written in 1998 at the request of the NBC Sports Division to accompany parts of their visual presentation of the Olympic Games celebrated that year in Seoul, South Korea. I tried to create a clear, simple "anthem" that could be stated by the entire orchestra, but primarily featuring the brass choir which is unequalled in its ability to conjure the spirit of heroism and dedication exhibited by the Olympic athletes. As always, the Olympic Games themselves present a metaphor for peaceful competition and worldwide cooperation that are our best hope for the future, and if The Olympic Spirit can in some small way capture the essence of these higher goals it would be rewarding indeed."
Summon the Heroes was written for the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta. In an interview with William Guegold (author of 100 Years of Olympic Music), Williams eloquently connects the mythic scale of athletic competition and his own creative endeavors: "I remember seeing a photograph of a female athlete suspended above the ground, every fiber of her being stretching for a ball just beyond her reach... captured in a shot, freezing time and denying gravity. There is unquestionably a spiritual, non-corporeal aspect to an athletic quest such as this that brings us close to what art is all about."
John Williams has become closely associated with epic storytelling ever since his giant orchestral scores for '70s disaster movies like Earthquake and The Towering Inferno. The popularity of Star Wars nearly single-handedly jump-started the use of the lush, Romantic orchestra used perennially in Hollywood's "Golden Age" of the 1930s and '40s. Errol Flynn-worthy themes composed for contemporary mythic characters like Superman, Indiana Jones, and, more recently, Harry Potter, have become part of our collective unconscious. It stands to reason that Williams would have been approached to compose themes for the real-live athletes competing on an epic scale in the Olympic Games.
Winds of Morocco by Robert Sheldon
Wind of Morocco was composer to mark the occasion of an exchange concert between Lincoln School in Chicago and a school in Morocco. The musical ideas utilized in creating this composition were drawn from Moroccan classical and folk music. Much of it used improvisational-type melodies which include many grace notes. These melodies are often repeated many times at a slow tempo, or even out of tempo, and become highly rhythmic with lively African percussion accompaniment, often in a triple meter. The orchestration attempts to capture some of the unique colors of Moroccan instruments.
Gently Blows the Summer Wind by Randall D. Standridge
From the composer:
Gently Blows the Summer Wind was written for the 2007 Salem High School Band and their conductor, Mr. Michael Cole. It was commissioned in remembrance of one of his students, Dennis Smith, who passed away. In writing this piece, the memory of a student I had taught began to intrude. Her name was Jamie Peeler, who also passed away young. I thought of how fleeting life can be, gone quickly as a summer wind. This metaphor serves as the central image of this piece. This music is meant to evoke the way summer winds can come quickly, brightening our lives for a brief moment, before flying away to destinations unknown.
Free World March by Karl L. King, arranged by James Swearingen
Karl Lawrence King was born February 21, 1891 in Paintersville, Ohio. His family moved to Xenia a short time later, and around the turn of the century, the King family moved to Canton, where young Karl would begin to develop and interest in bands and music. After receiving some instruction on the cornet, King switched to baritone. His first band experience was with the Thayer Military Band of Canton, while in his teens. In 1909 King spent some time as a member of bands in Columbus and also Danville, Illinois. While a member of their bands, King began to compose marches and other works. Beginning in 1910, King began a decade-long career as a circus musician, spending one season each as a baritone player in the bands of Robinson's Famous Circus, Yankee Robinson Circus, sells Floto Circus, and the Barnum and Bailey “Greatest Show on Earth.”
As a composer, King was one of the most prolific and popular in the history of band music. He composed at least 291 works, including 185 marches, 22 overtures, 12 gallops, 29 waltzes, and works in many other styles. Not only did he compose some of the most brilliant and famous marches for experienced bands at the professional and university levels; he also displayed a remarkable ability to compose first-rate music for younger, less experienced musicians and bands. His music continues to be performed worldwide by bands of all experience levels.
... for the support of your child's interest in music! Your continued encouragement means everything for the developing musician. Please take time to thank your child for their performance and to praise them for a job well done!