We proudly present one of Gershwin's most famous and popular works: Rhapsody in Blue, in its brilliant 1942 symphonic version by Ferde Grofé. The rhapsody is one of Gershwin's most recognizable creations and a key composition that defined the Jazz Age. Gershwin's piece inaugurated a new era in America's musical history, established his reputation as an eminent composer and became one of the most popular of all concert works. In the American Heritage magazine, Frederic D. Schwarz posits that the famous opening clarinet glissando has become as instantly recognizable to concert audiences as the opening of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony.
Grofé produced this 1942 arrangement for a full symphony orchestra. It is scored for solo piano and an orchestra consisting of two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets in B♭ and A, one bass clarinet, two bassoons, two alto saxophones in E♭, one tenor saxophone in B♭; three French horns in F, three trumpets in B♭, three trombones, one tuba; a percussion section that includes timpani, one suspended cymbal, one snare drum, one bass drum, one tam-tam, one triangle, one glockenspiel, and cymbals; one tenor banjo; and strings. Since the mid-20th century, the 1942 arrangement became a staple of the concert repertoire.
As a jazz concerto, Rhapsody in Blue is written for solo piano with orchestra. A rhapsody differs from a concerto in that it features one extended movement instead of separate movements. Rhapsodies often incorporate passages of an improvisational nature—although written out in a score—and are irregular in form, with heightened contrasts and emotional exuberance. The music ranges from intensely rhythmic piano solos to slow, broad, and richly orchestrated sections. Consequently, the Rhapsody "may be looked upon as a fantasia, with no strict fidelity to form."
- 2Fl, 2Ob, 2Cl, Bcl, 2Bsn, 3 Sax, 3 Hn, 3 Tpt,3 Tbn, Tba, Timp, Perc, Banjo (optional), Piano Solo, Strings
- 17-18 min.
- Product Type:
- REPRINT SERIES
- Set of Parts:
- Strings count 220.127.116.11.2 (Piano Solo only in Score)
- Piano Solo:
- Only in Full Score, for a separate Piano Solo part contact us