Mon Salut à St. Petersbourg

Concert Band

Mon Salut à St. Petersbourg
Mon Salut a St. Petersbourg

Sankt Petersburg Salut

Concert March, March
Grade Level:
Performance time:
Full Score + Parts
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Release Date:


Hans Christian Lumbye was a Danish director and composer; he was born on May 2, 1810 in Copenhagen. During one of several boat trips with his family for his father’s military transfers, Hans Christian became sick, which probably caused his deafness in later years. Lumbye learned to play the violin and trumpet, had music theory lessons and early on began to write songs and marches. At the age of 14, he became military musician and in 1829, he asked for transfer to Copenhagen. When Lumbye was off duty, he played dance music. He also worked as a composer, wrote a lot of dance music and became a popular director for Copenhagen’s upper class. The musical tipping point was when Lumbye first heard the music of Joseph Lanner and Johann Strauß (father) and soon wrote in a similar style – people called him the Nordic Strauß. Audiences loved his style, and this was one reason Lumbye’s concerts in Tivoli amusement park were well frequented and very successful. Lumbye had been involved from the beginning, when the park opened in 1843. He and his orchestra performed there from spring to fall. In winter, when the Tivoli was closed, Lumbye’s orchestra played in Copenhagen’s theatres and at festivities of the upper class or they toured through Denmark and abroad. Lumbye wrote more than 700 pieces and is one of the few Danish composers whose music is performed in other countries. He was quick and up to date. He wrote music for extraordinary events in Copenhagen and in compliment to the Royal Family or other prominent persons. Almost one hundred of his melodies are named after women. In 1872, Lumbye had to quit his work as director and conductor because he was weakened and deaf. In May 1873, he conducted his famous "Champagne Galop" for the last time – seated. Hans Christian Lumbye died on March 20, 1874. During a very successful five-month summer engagement in St. Petersburg, Lumbye composed several new pieces. There was a little ritual at his guest appearances to finish the concert with a salute to the audience. Not having an appropriate new piece, he performed a march that he had written two years earlier for the Danish Civil Guards and spontaneously titled it "Mon Salut à St. Petersbourg". The audience loved the piece. This superb march, which was originally composed for symphony orchestra, shows several special elements: The delicate introduction sounds as if the guards were marching onto the court and the trio is reminiscent of Slavic music. After the performance in St. Petersburg in 1850, the march was little known and barely played. Now it has been rediscovered and published for the first time in a version for concert band by RUNDEL Music Publications, adapted by Russian arranger Lenontij Dunaev. Lumbye’s composing style with audience appeal perfectly suits the concert band sound that worthily presents "Saint Petersburg Salute".

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