Concert Band


A Symphonic Rhapsody

Concert Piece, Rhapsody
Grade Level:
Performance time:
Full Score + Condensed Score + Parts
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Release Date:


In many of his works, Alfred Bösendorfer demonstrates his preference for elements from the folk music of different peoples or for typical characteristics of different cultural regions in Europe. They inspire him while at the same time guaranteeing the universal popularity which his works enjoy. In his composition »Scandinavia« he employs the free, rhapsodic form in order to take a musical journey through the various Scandinavian countries.

In principle, »Scandinavia« is made up of four sections. Bösendorfer begins his journey in the far North, in Lapland. The prelude consists of a brief, dynamic festive march with which the listener can associate the migration of the reindeer to their pastures and the summer journeys of the nomadic Lapps. After only a few bars this festivo section ends in a delicate web of sound created by the woodwind, a cantabile with a religious character.

After the repetition of the initial melody, the composer takes us on to Sweden in the second section. Here Bösendorfer creates the impression of a rural festival with dance tunes, some rather melancholy. This part of the work is characterised by long-drawn-out tones and sounds. They are reminiscent of the drone of a bagpipe and of repeated melodic phrases which create the impression of a hurdy-gurdy for the listener.

The third section of the composition takes us to Norway. Sombre chords in the brass, the expressive soli in the woodwind, a wonderful cantabile and a contemplative pensieroso create an impression of breadth and distance. Beautiful, full harmonies and gentle, melancholic lyricism remind the listener of the great composer Edvard Grieg, whose memory was honoured by the music world in 2007 on the 100th anniversary of his death.

In the fourth section we depart the deep woods of Norway and the streams plunging into the sea, and join an exuberant celebration of young, carefree people in Denmark. Boisterous joie de vivre and fiery, Slavic-sounding dance forms are given expression by the composer through a variety of voices joined in close counterpoint, colourful orchestration and a wealth of melodies.

In »Scandinavia« Alfred Bösendorfer has succeeded in creating a work which represents a considerable addition to the repertoire for the intermediate and advanced levels in particular.

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See also

Landespolizeiorchester Brandenburg / Peter Vierneisel CD (Compact Disc)



Adventure (Götz) - Imagasy (Kraas) - Silva Nigra (Götz) - Burlesque e Cantabile (Stanék) - Song for Benni (Vlak) - Scandinavia (Bösendorfer) - Another Opening (Neuböck) - Remember Me (Stanék) - L.A. California ...