Cinematic overture featuring a heroic main theme, development into a dark variation, a ballad, and a triumphant recapitulation. Originally written for concert band.
Orchestra | Grade 4 | 11:00
Available for purchase on J.W. Pepper:
The sound file is also available for purchase on Bandcamp:
To Steve Pasche, for encouraging me to write this piece (my first ever), for teaching me the basics of music notation software, for indulging my last-minute changes, and for conducting the premiere at the final band concert of my senior year of high school;
To my high school bandmates, for the journey we shared growing up together.
About the piece
Some people begin composing at 5 or 10 years old; I am not one of those people. Although I started hearing music in my head that I had never heard before sometime around early adolescence, it didn’t occur to me to try to write any of it down until high school. I knew I wanted to study music composition in college, hence my decision to go to Concordia (Moorhead); I had not yet started composing in earnest when I applied. In my last semester of high school, our band director encouraged me to begin composing and offered that I could use the software on his school computer. I spent many hours that spring cooped up in his office, pecking notes into Finale and making many last minute changes up until the premiere.
On one hand, it was amazing to finally hear it come to life and share the experience with all my friends. On the other hand, playing my own work showed me things I needed to work on if I was to continue. (In that sense, I am very grateful to have had the opportunities to study at Concordia and UNH.) However, I did submit the piece to the Minnesota Music Educators Association’s high school composition contest that year (instrumental ensemble division). Overture in B Flat tied for first place. It was an encouragement to be recognized, and I continued composing through college with zeal. As the first piece I ever wrote for concert band, it will always hold a lot of nostalgia for me, and I hope many other groups will also enjoy performing it.
Overture in B Flat was originally premiered in May of 2008 by the Hutchinson High School Symphonic Band, Steve Pasche, director. It was arranged for orchestra in 2022.