New selection of marches from the museum "Collection" musical library
We have prepared a new selection of marches recorded on metal disks that are stored in the museum “Collection” musical library. These marches are often performed at the Spasskaya Tower international military music festival on the Red Square.
One of them is “The Captain” march by John Philip Sousa, the American composer and conductor of wind instruments’ orchestra, the well-known “Tzar of marches”, as well as the inventor of the unique brass instrument - Sousaphone.
The march is recorded on metal disc that can be played back on several disk musical boxes. John Sousa left huge creative legacy - he wrote 136 marches, many operettas, waltzes and humoresques. His music is performed at all official events in the USA. His marches cause a storm of applause and enthusiastic cries of "encore!" during concerts. His music still actual, despite the fact that John Sousa was born in 1854. The Americans cherish him not only as a composer, but as a patriot as well. During his numerous tours in Europe with the Marine Corps, he managed to dismantle the widespread notions that the USA did not have a decent culture.
Another piece, also recorded on the metal disc, is March from the operetta “The Beggar Student” by the Austrian composer and conductor Carl Millöcker. Along with Johann Strauss and Franz von Suppé, Carl Millöcker is considered a classic of the 19th century Viennese operetta.
The composer created the operetta “The Beggar Student”, which rightfully became one of the most significant phenomena of the Austrian operetta classics, in 1882. Its libretto, written by the experienced authors F. Zell and Richard Genée, which was the established Viennese tradition, was borrowed from the French culture – the play “Fernanda” by Victorien Sardou. The action takes place in the ancient capital of Poland - Krakow in 1704, in the reign of Frederick Augustus II, the Strong, Prince-elector of Saxony and the King of Poland.
The frivolous plot, built on a joke, is related to a very serious topic - the struggle of the Poles for their national self-determination, for the Polish king, against the oppressor Saxons.
In the cheerful, unpretentious performance, Carl Millöcker used the national rhythms and melodic features with great mastery, transforming them, taking into account the specifics of the operetta genre, into complete, clear dramatic forms. Despite the apparent seriousness and moreover, the dramatic nature of some situations (for example, the scenes in prison), the music was always joyful, light, flowing freely and naturally, with full-blooded folk life pulsing in it, healthy and optimistic.
“Marching through Georgia” by Henry Clay Work is equally piquant piece that is presented in the museum musical library.
"Marching Through Georgia" is a marching song written by Henry Clay Work at the end of the American Civil War in 1865. The title and lyrics of the song were inspired by the U.S. Army major-general William T. Sherman's "March to the Sea" written while capturing the Confederate city of Savannah, Georgia in December 1864.
The song became widely popular with the Union Army veterans after the American Civil War. The song, sung from the point of view of a soldier from the north of the country, narrated of marching through the Georgian territory, where the liberated slaves, met the Southern Unionist soldiers with great enthusiasm. After the war, in the southern areas of the United States, and particularly in Georgia, the song came to symbolize the devastation and political domination the Union wrought upon the Confederacy.
Nowadays, the song remains popular with brass bands, and its tune has been adapted to other popular songs, including the controversial, sectarian anthem of Glasgow Rangers Football Club "Billy Boys" and "Come In, Come In". It sounded in the movie “Gone with the Wind” as well. David Lloyd George used the tune for his election campaign song George and Gladstone in his first election campaign in 1890.
The anglicized version of the song was recorded between 1901 and 1903 during the Second Anglo Boer War. This version, although almost identical, included alternate lyrics and was issued as "Marching on Pretoria" on the Zonophone label.
The final march in the musical selection, composed by the founder of the Austrian operetta, Franz von Suppé, is "Boccacio-Marsch or "Prince of Palermo" from the composer's operetta “Boccaccio”. The action took place in Florence in 1331. The protagonist of the operetta was one of the major writers of the Italian Renaissance, Giovanni Boccaccio. The librettists did not set objective to theatricalize his biography for the operetta. They selected several of his short stories from the famous Decameron, combined them in one plot and developed the writer into the key character.
“Boccaccio” is one of the best operettas by Franz von Suppé. It is distinguished by vivid Italian flavor combined with typically Viennese soft melodicism, fascinating rhythms, peculiar musical characteristics of the personalities, and great lyrical uplift. The musical structure of the operetta indicates Suppe’s desire to converge operetta and opera forms. This is evidenced by the extensive score with accomplished musical scenes, with large ensembles and choir in which the action is actively developed, with many recitations, with independent orchestral episodes and monumental finals.