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The final of three German marches in this volume, Preussiens Gloria, is also one of the most famous German marches around today. It was originally written by Johann Gottfried Piefke to commemorate another military victory, in which Prussia (contrary to circumstances surrounding the other Prussian Marches in this volume) was not a British ally.
Instigated by Prussian Chancellor Otto von Bismark, and declared by France, the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871) was a climax of tensions which had remained between the two countries during and after the Napoleonic Wars. Through the war with France, Prussia and the German states were able to expand their borders and gain recognition as a considerable power, securing the unification of Germany under Wilhelm I of Prussia. It marked the fall of Napoleon III, and the Second French Empire. France lost the territories of Alsace and Lorraine, setting precedents which would later aid the outbreak of the First World War.
Preussiens Gloria did not, however, become an enduring symbol of the war – it did not achieve a broad audience for several decades by virtue of the fact that it was only played on special occasions. It was re-discovered and added to the general military repertoire in 1909 by a Professor Grawert. Today, it is still played by the Bundeswehr at ceremonies and state visits, and has been adopted by international units, including Britain’s Honourable Artillery Company.
Suggestions for Performance
This piece should be carried primarily by the trumpets, which ideally should be issued entirely “A” and “B” parts if possible. All upper winds should also be issued parts in the same manner. All lower winds and low brass (Tenor Sax, Bari Sax, Trombone, Tuba, and Euphonium) should be given the “D” part as much as possible. The “C” part needs only a small representation in the ensemble , and should be reserved mainly for musicians who encounter difficulty playing any other part.
The DMus will notice the Clarinet “A” part is doubled up an octave in the chorale section. This may be useful to fill in the melody and gain clarity from the winds, if there are few trumpets in the ensemble. The DMus may, however, wish for the clarinets to play the lower notes though, if trumpets are plentiful or if the ensemble is indoors, to avoid the intonation problems caused by overblowing between Clarinets, Trumpets and Flutes in their upper registers.
For anything not permitted by the above licence then you should contact the publisher first to obtain permission.
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