Illusions for Brass

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Illusions for Brass, op. 10
 - for Brass Quintet -
grade 5 – 7:15


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This four-movement suite for brass quintet is as delightful to hear as it is challenging to play.  The variety of moods and styles represented create a most engaging piece for inclusion on any recital.

The first movement, Allegro moderato, uses quartal harmony along with angular themes and punctuated rhythms in mixed meters.  This is followed by the second movement, Lento, which provides a contrasting lyricism, poignant melodies and melancholy harmonies in a minor key.  The third movement is a rowdy and obtuse March, which includes chromaticism, deceptive cadences and a rude trombone glissando.  An unexpected hymn-like chorale interrupts the march, before it returns at a quickened pace to lead this movement to a raucous conclusion.  The final movement, Allegretto, begins with a fanfare followed by a tuneful, yet technical main theme which eventually evolves into a chorale-style interlude that provides a backdrop for a brief restatement of the main themes from each of the preceding movements.  A rhythmic development section brings us back to the main theme followed by the opening fanfare which closes the piece in a decisive manner.