Low Brass Elegy

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GENRE: Low brass choir, piano, aux percussion

INSTRUMENTATION: 4 Tenor Trombones, 2 Bass Trombones, Euphonium, Tuba, Piano, Aux Perc

CREATIVE VISION: In 2013 tornados tore through the town of Moore, Oklahoma. They happened to strike two schools directly. Children and teachers both perished. As a parent I couldn’t imagine what the families who lost elementary school age children were going through. “Children of Moore” is my elegy for the children lost, the families who lost them, and to express my profound sadness.

Composition Details (Tempo, Key, Main Chords etc):

The first statement is played by unison bass trombone and euphonium. I wanted to ensure the use full warm sound of the large bore trombone coupled with the conical bore of the euphonium.

The second statement remains in unison adds the smaller bore tenor trombones in octaves. The phrase ends by adding the tuba and bass trombones on a low B2 chord.

As the piece progresses harmony is added through melodic coupling, two part harmonies, full extended chords.

The piano recorded here was played slightly faster than I intended due to broadcast run times. The quodlibet of “Brahms’ Lullabye” ends with the Bb/Eb (fifth and tonic of the key) suspended over an Eadd9 chord. I left the piano part unresolved to build tension for the final whispered triad in the brass.

Stan Bann - “Children of Moore”


I love it Stan. Beautifull harmonies. Tragic story.
As a feedback I could say that is doesn’t make me feel really sad. Maybe “hope”, “resignation” even “peace”.
The other sounds apart from brass, are completelly unnecesary.
It is a beautifull piece. Congratulations.

Thank you, Vincente!

I’m glad the hope also came through in the music. My wish was also to let the families know they weren’t alone in their ordeal. People cared about them.

As an epilogue to this I sent the piece to the University of Oklahoma Trombone Studio as a gift along with the story of how it came to be. The director wrote me back saying they were doing a special concert a few weeks from then and there would be a contingent of families from Moore. He programmed the piece and made sure the story was told to the audience.

I received many emails and messages from the very families I was hoping to reach saying it touched them and meant a lot to be remembered. Their messages often moved me to tears.

To me this is the true power of music. To connect on a level where words can’t express.

Peace to you, Vincente!

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