August 11, 2014 --
The Director’s Choice audio download for the month of August is Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Serenade No. 10 in B-flat, K. 361, “Gran Partita.” The work is only one of three pieces that Mozart contributed to the medium “Harmoniemusik,” music for pairs of oboes, clarinets, horns, and bassoons that was very popular during Mozart’s time. However, the composer’s “Gran Partita” expands past the normal “Harmoniemusik” configuration by adding two bassett horns, two additional horns, and double bassoon. As such, the work truly is a grand piece with a majestic opening, elegant inner movements, and an exhilarating, joyful conclusion.
Marine Band 27th Director Col. Michael J. Colburn, USMC (Ret.), conducted the performance of the piece on April 12, 2014, in the Coolidge Auditorium at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. The concert was curated by noted British composer and conductor Oliver Knussen and was the culmination of a four day residency at the Library of Congress where he curated a series of concerts and special programs.
Download Serenade No. 10 in B-flat, K. 361, “Gran Partita”
The March of the Month audio download is John Philip Sousa’s “On the Campus,” a fitting selection as students at universities and colleges across the nation prepare to head back to school. Sousa dedicated the march to all college students past, present, and future. While the piece is not as well known as some of his other marches, it still has all the characteristics of many great works for which Sousa is known. The march also encapsulates the sound and feel of the college scene and celebratory atmosphere that was ever-present in the roaring 1920s.
Colburn conducted the Marine Band in this performance during the 2010 National Concert Tour to the South.
Download “On the Campus”