THE GREAT GATE AT KIEV

By MODESTE MUSSORGSKY  

 

A few words about this arrangement:

Yet another arrangement of Mussorgsky’s “Great Gate of Kiev” from his piano work “Pictures at an exhibition”?     It needs a little explanation: 

Firstly, this arrangement is designed to be played by a competent amateur orchestra. It does not require the virtuosity of Ravel’s famous version. Secondly, it is written with the specific purpose of allowing the sections of the orchestra to create their own distinctive sound, and then blend them as the piece progresses. As such, it can be used as an exercise in orchestral ensemble playing, though it still makes an impressive performance piece. 

There are parts for the following instruments: 

2 PICCOLOS

2 FLUTES

1 OBOE

2 CLARINETS 1 in Bb

2 BASSOONS

4 HORNS in F

2 TRUMPETS in Bb

2 TENOR TROMBONES

1 BASS TROMBONE (Doubling TUBA)

PERCUSSION 1: TIMPANI + TAM TAM

PERCUSSION 2: BASS DRUM + SUSPENDED CYMBAL + TRIANGLE

VIOLIN

VIOLA

CELLO

BASS

 

However, if your orchestra is challenged in some areas, certain instruments can be omitted without affecting the structure of the piece, though it will, of course, change the balance of sound and the orchestral colours. Parts written in this way are; piccolos, oboe, bassoons, trumpets, trombones, tuba and percussion. You could probably just manage without fourth horn. 

So, the arrangement works well with a small orchestra, and even better with a large one.

 Whichever sized orchestra you have at your disposal, I hope you enjoy playing it.

ANDY JACKSON

 

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