Composer: McMillan, Benjamin
Instrumentation: Ensemble Instruments: Euphonium
For 8 Euphoniums; My initial prompt for writing came from one of the "Harry Potter" films, a jazzier cue involving a double-decker bus. In particular, I borrowed (stole) a rhythm from near the beginning of that cue and constructed the rest of the piece around this. Being that I was—and still am—a poor student of jazz theory, much of the piece is based on a standard B-flat blues scale, along with some of the techniques and styles I had picked up playing bass trombone in a local swing-dance band.
One of the main strengths of writing for my own instrument was knowing exactly what it's capable of. The piece utilizes extended ranges, both in the upper and lower extremities, as well as the somewhat rare euphonium mute for car horn effects. People unfamiliar with the full capabilities of the euphonium are often surprised when they hear this one.
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