Swiss Festival Overture

The Berne Music Association commissioned a Swiss Festival Overture for the Bern Canton Music Festival held in Langenthal in 1989. It was composed both for brass and wind bands as both types of band took part in the contest.

The overture starts with a noble and spacious fanfare based on a Bb triad. A quieter moment follows with a long theme unfolding from echoes of the fanfare and this builds to a climax where the fanfare returns. Over a stained chord this triad figure echoes (among the Alps?) in free time and introduces a short euphonium cadenza. This leads back to the opening, which accelerates into a lively Vivo. Percussion hammers out a new rhythm an after a few bars a rhythmic accompaniment starts up over which a perky tune which starts quietly is then taken up by the full band. A short bridge passage on the horns leads to a legato tune from the middle of the band which is again taken up by the full band. After a climax this subsides to a sustained bass note with rhythmic echoes of the first vivo tune. Bit by bit this reappears until the a full-blown recapitulation leads to a short Coda based on the opening fanfare.