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Author Topic: Favorite Community Orchestra Pieces  (Read 435 times)
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hyperbolica
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« on: May 17, 2017, 09:34AM »

I may have the opportunity to have some input into the program for a local college/community orchestra. I've got some ideas from things I've played in the past, but I'd like to hear what you all have to say. What pieces do you think can be played effectively by community groups? We have strong woodwinds and brass. The more tromboney the better. This group would be more likely to play a movement from say Dvorak New World rather than the whole thing. They typically do some lighter stuff too, like a march, a collection of show tunes, maybe a classical/romantic dance, etc.

I did find this list, which gives a headstart on selections... http://www.orchestralist.net/olist/registry/easyrep.php
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BGuttman
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« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2017, 09:54AM »

As a long time member of similar orchestras (strong brass and winds, fair to middling strings) I can offer a couple of suggestions.  More as I think about it.

If your concertmaster is a strong violinist, Scheherezade is a great piece.  Lots of winds and brass.  And a very demanding solo violin part.

I tend to like Dvorak symphonies, especially 8 and 9 (old 4 and 5).

Shostakovich Festive Overture (which actually has six  trombone parts!).

Simpler sting parts but juicy brass: Symphony Fantastique.  Uses 2 tubas and one goes up to A above the bass staff.

Smetana, Die Moldau.

(probably more to come -- check back)
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Bruce Guttman
Solo Trombone, Hollis Town Band
Section Ldr, Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orch.
matto

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« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2017, 10:17AM »

Rossini Overtures can be a lot of fun. La Gazza Ladra and William Tell have great trombone parts, singular or section, depending on the edition.

It may be more pop in style than you're looking for, but Broadway medleys of shows from the 40s-60s usually have fun sections, ala South Pacific, Camelot, Fiddler on the Roof, etc.

Dvorak Slavonic Dances, Mussorgsky Night on Bald Mountain, Rimsky-Korsakov Cappricio Espagnol, and some of the Tchaikovsky Ballet Suites, though you need either a harp, or piano covering harp, to pull some of these off.
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Matt Hodgson
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« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2017, 11:53AM »

I did not know that about festive overture, never looked at the score.  I've always played it with a limited section so we just have done without!  Wind band arrangement of it that I did had Euph parts that were just the piccolo part down an octave, that was fun  :-0
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hyperbolica
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« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2017, 12:05PM »

Thanks for some of the recommendations. This group has played some of the pieces like the Moldau previously, and I think stuff like Rossini is probably out of range.

How about some off-the-beaten-path sort of pieces like Deserted Ballroom by Morton Gould - kind of creepy, but a lot of fun to listen to, or Pirate Dance by Leroy Anderson.
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BGuttman
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« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2017, 12:12PM »

The 4th, 5th, and 6th trombone parts in Festive Overture are quite disposable.  Only play at the very end.

Leroy Anderson is always a winner.  String parts are not hard, and they go over well.  There are quite a few of them.

Look into Copland's Rodeo movements.  Buckaroo Holiday and Hoe Down are two of my favorites (nice trombone parts).

Newer music sometimes cannot be bought (fortunately the Coplands can) and have to be rented.  It can cost $500 for a single performance.  I feel this is extortion.
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2017, 12:44PM »

Rimsky Korsakov: Russian Easter Overture
Mozart: Magic Flute Overture (Don't know if your strings would be up to it)
Brahms: Academic Festival Overture
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LeoInFL
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« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2017, 12:45PM »

Last season we did some fun arrangements:
Tribute to John Williams
James Bond Medley
Pirates of the Carribean

In a few weeks we'll be performing:
Liberty Fanfare
Summon the Heroes
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Leo
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BGuttman
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« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2017, 12:54PM »

Rimsky Korsakov: Russian Easter Overture
Mozart: Magic Flute Overture (Don't know if your strings would be up to it)
Brahms: Academic Festival Overture


Russian Easter has the same problem as Scheherezade.  You have to have a monster Concert Master to handle the violin solo passages.  There is a really nice trombone solo, though...
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Bruce Guttman
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hyperbolica
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« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2017, 01:37PM »

Rimsky Korsakov: Russian Easter Overture
Mozart: Magic Flute Overture (Don't know if your strings would be up to it)
Brahms: Academic Festival Overture


We've done both the Russian Easter and Academic Festival. I played the Russian Easter solo. We had a ringer concertmaster from the local pro symphony.
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