Sparke - The Year of the Dragon - 10 piece Brass

Daniel Drage
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The Year of the Dragon - by Philip Sparke (*1951) - Arranged for 10 piece Brass Ensemble by Daniel Drage.

The Year of the Dragon The highlight of Cory’s centenary celebrations throughout 1984 was a concert held in St. David’s Hall, Cardiff, in March. The band, with the aid of funds provided by the Welsh Arts Council, commissioned Philip Sparke to write a work for first performance at this concert.

The result was “The Year of the Dragon” of which the composer writes: “At the time I wrote The Year of the Dragon, Cory had won two successive National Finals and I set out to write a virtuoso piece to display the talents of this remarkable band to the full.”

The work is in three movements:

  • TOCCATA opens with an arresting side drum figure and snatches of themes from various sections of the band, which try to develop until a broad and powerful theme from the middle of the band asserts itself. A central dance-like section soon gives way to the return of this theme, which subsides until faint echoes of the opening material fade to a close.
  • INTERLUDE takes the form of a sad and languid solo for trombone. A chorale for the whole band introduces a brief spell of optimism but the trombone solo returns to close the movement quietly.
  • FINALE is a real tour-de-force for the band with a stream of rapid semi-quavers running throughout the movement. The main theme is heroic and march-like but this is interspersed with lighter, more playful episodes. A distant fanfare to the sound of bells is introduced and this eventually returns to bring the work to a stirring close.

This arrangement played by Alliance Brass:


This product is available for digital download only - the item includes :

  • Part 1 - Eb Cornet
  • Part 2 - Bb Cornet
  • Part 3 - Bb Cornet
  • Part 4 - Bb Cornet/Flugelhorn
  • Part 5 - Horn in Eb
  • Part 6 - Trombone
  • Part 7 - Trombone/Euphonium
  • Part 8 - Trombone/Euphonium
  • Part 9 - Bb Treble clef Euphonium
  • Part 10 - Tuba
  • Three Percussion parts.