Theatre Music was
commissioned by the 'Musikpreis Grenchen' (a Swiss concert band festival) a test
piece for their 1990 Festival.
The Overture opens with a
fanfare from the brass, which releases a flurry of notes from the woodwinds.
Clarinets, horns and saxophones introduce the first subject, a perky tune that
is thrown around various sections of the band until a second march-like theme
takes over. The second subject proper, a smooth, cantabile tune on horns and
saxes, leads to an echo of the opening. All the material is reprised before the
movement ends as it opened.
This is a slow, tender
movement with solos for flute and alto saxophone and then oboe and tenor
saxophone. A trumpet introduces a second theme and again this is played by the
full band and leads to a recapitulation of the opening tune before the movement
ends quietly and peacefully.
A headlong gallop of a movement, which starts with a robust tune from the middle of the band, which is then played in canon by the full band. A quiet martial episode leads to a flowing central tune which crescendos to a climax before giving way to a reprise of the opening tune. The movement ends with a brief reference to the Overture.