Brass Quintet Excerpts, Part III

This is the third and final part of a series of posts on the horn in brass quintet music, and I thought to wrap things up it would be good to talk about a few different topics.

1) Other resources: In addition to the Guide to the Brass Quintet there are many other websites, dissertations, and articles devoted to this type of ensemble.  Check out the Additional Resources page on my website for links to brass quintet websites, videos, and a brief listing of books and dissertations on the subject.  Two highly recommended websites are the  American Brass Quintet‘s , which contains a search-able database of brass quintet compositions, and the British website The Internet Bandsman’s Everything Within (IBEW), which has links to brass ensemble websites worldwide – click on “Bands” then “Brass Ensembles” in the top menu bar.  Two dissertations that I read in detail while working on mine are Marta Jean Hofacre’s The Use of Tenor Trombone in Twentieth-Century Brass Quintet Music: A Brief Historical Overview with a Comprehensive Listing of Original Published Twentieth-century Quintets and a Discussion of Tenor Trombone Excerpts from Selected  Compositions, D.M.A. dissertation, University of Oklahoma, 1986, and Daniel Wayne Kiser’s A Musical and Pedagogical Classification of Selected Brass Quintet Literature, D.M.A. dissertation, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, 1987.  Both of these excellent documents are available through ProQuest Dissertations and Theses.

2) Transcriptions and Arrangements: This is one area of brass quintet repertoire I chose not to consider in my dissertation, but these works are as important as original compositions in brass quintet performance – think of all the wedding gigs that wouldn’t be possible without arrangements!  The main reason for omitting transcriptions and arrangements in my project was to keep the size and scope within manageable limits.  However, there are definitely standard arrangements and transcriptions that every serious horn player in a brass quintet should know – one that comes to mind right away is Jack Gale’s arrangement of selections from West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein.

3) Copyright: This was an area I considered very carefully before proceeding with the project, and contacting publishers was one of the first steps.  I included the following statement about copyright in both my dissertation and on the Copyright Information page of the website.

Because all of the works included in this collection are protected by copyright law, obtaining adequate permission from publishers to reproduce these excerpts became another important consideration.  Every attempt was made to contact the publishers of these works to obtain permission to reprint short excerpts for inclusion in this site.  The presentation of short sections of only the horn parts to these compositions prevents this project from being used as a substitute for actual performing parts, and will hopefully provide greater exposure for these compositions.  In all cases, both publisher and copyright information are included at the end of each group of excerpts from a specific composition.  It is my sincere wish that the presentation of these excerpts will encourage brass musicians to seek out the complete parts and purchase them for study and performance.

For the most part, publishers and composers happily granted me permission to reproduce short excerpts, for which I am very thankful.  Although I do believe that the use of these excerpts falls under the “Fair Use” clause of U.S. Copyright Code, I wanted to avoid any potential conflicts.

That does it for this series on the brass quintet – happy practicing!

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