Pictures at an Exhibition for Ten-Part Brass

Composer
Modest Mussorgsky
Arranger
Lyricist
none
Difficulty
Difficult (Grades 7+)
Duration
36 minutes
Genre
Classical music
Instrumentation
Brass quartet
Related scores
Canzona "La Battalia" for Three Brass Quintets, Concerto Grosso Op. 6 No. 2 for Brass Quintet, Concerto in A Minor, BWV 1041 for Brass Quintet, Rondo Alla Turca for Brass Quintet, Concerto in B-flat Op. 5 No. 1, Deo Gratias for Large Brass Choir, Concerto in D Minor BWV 1043, Concerto in E Major, BWV 1042 for brass quintet, Contrapunctus 1 from The Art of Fugue, Danny Boy (trombone and piano), Ten Easy Christmas Carols for Brass Quintet, Four Arias from 'Carmen' for Soprano & Brass Quintet, Concerto Grosso No. 12 'La Follia' for brass ensemble, Gymnopedie No. 1 for Brass Quintet, Spem in Alium (eight brass quintets), Italian Concerto for Brass Quintet, Abblasen for Brass Quintet, Overture from the Easter Oratorio, Missa Papea Marcelli, Monteverdi Vespers - Deus in Adjutorium for Brass Quintet, Overture from Cantata BWV 194 for Six Trumpets, Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor for Symphonic Brass, Aria Della Battaglia, Prelude & Fugue BWV 550, Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 for Brass Quintet (1), Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 for Brass Quintet (iii), The Harmonious Blacksmith for Brass Quintet, Toccata and Fugue in D Minor for Symphonic Brass, Toccata from L'Orfeo, Trombatorium, Trumpet Tune & Air (ten-part brass), Two Arias from Samson & Delilah for Soprano and Brass Quintet, Valles Marineris, for Trumpet and Piano, Water Music Suite for Brass Quintet, Sinfonia from Cantata BWV 29 for Brass Quintet and Organ, Pictures at an Exhibition for Symphonic Brass and Four Preludes and Fugues from the Well-Tempered Clavier (Book One) for Brass Quintet

This is a complete orchestration of Mussorgsky's famous piano suite 'Pictures at an Exhibition', scored for ten-part brass and two percussionists. A piccolo trumpet will be required for the lead part. I am indebted to David Neill, who commissioned this ten-part arrangement. My sixteen-part symphonic brass arrangement is also available on this site.

The premise for this piece is an exhibition of watercolour paintings by Mussorgsky's friend V. Hartmann. The sixteen movements of this piece are divided into five promenades, which describe the composer walking between the pictures, and eleven 'pictures' which feature a great variety of colour, meter and style.

I have taken as my starting point the piano version of the suite, and was inevitably influenced by the other orchestrations with which I am familiar - Ravel's reworking for full orchestra, and another symphonic brass arrangement by Elgar Howarth.

Each section of the ensemble receives a thorough workout, and this arrangement is not for the faint-hearted! The promenades are divided between the instruments and the trumpeters have the lion's share of melodic material throughout the piece.

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