program notes by composition > D > The Duke of Marlborough Fanfare

The Duke of Marlborough Fanfare

Percy Aldridge Grainger/arr. Donald Hunsberger

The Duke of Marlborough Fanfare was written in 1939 and dedicated to Edvard Grieg. It is subtitled "British War Mood Grows". Grainger wrote: "In my setting the tune is heard twice. The first time (behind the platform) it typifies memories of long-past wars, far-off, poetic. The second time (on the platform) it typifies war in the present: fast-moving, close at hand, debonair, drastic."

Percy Aldridge Grainger (1882-1961) was born in Australia. At the outbreak of World War I he enlisted as an army bandsman (oboist). He became a U.S. citizen in 1919 and made many worldwide concert tours. As a composer, he was a remarkable innovator. He was one of the first to use a phonograph in collecting folk tunes. He eschewed Italian, the customary language for specifying tempos and dynamics, in favor of English.

Last updated on March 6, 2020 by Palatine Concert Band