Overture to The Marriage of Figaro

W. A. Mozart arr. Erik Cole
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page one of Overture to  The Marriage of Figaro

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Full details

When approaching how to arrange this piece, the biggest challenge was the motor rhythm of the repeated eighth notes constantly present in the string parts. It is also occasionally present in the original bassoon parts, however, and is playable if the piece is taken at a more conservative tempo. Double-tonguing certainly makes it possible at faster speeds, but having an entire ensemble that can do it is an unlikely scenario.

Leaving it out completely made for a much less exciting arrangement. As such, I've tried to spread those passages among all the parts so that no one part had to do it for too long a stretch at a time. Also, the option to replace the eighth notes with quarter notes is present in all the parts - that can be done uniformly throughout the ensemble, only for players that need it, or even would be fine if players who can mostly keep up with the tonguing need just a measure or two break.

As typical in my large transcriptions, all of the oboe and bassoon parts are divisi in two parts. I did my best to keep up with the tonguing in the layered recording attached, and, as always, keep in mind that I'm an oboist, and please forgive my inelegant attempt at what is a very standard and challenging bassoon excerpt.

Score ID
W. A. Mozart arr. Erik Cole
Difficult (Grades 7+)
5 minutes
Double reed ensemble
Classical music

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