Savazzini, Sinfonia

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Savazzini’s Sinfonia for band is dedicated to Vittorio Emanuele II (1820–1879), King of Italy.


Product Description

Fed­eri­co Savazz­i­ni (1830–1913)
Mod­ern edi­tion by David Whitwell (1937–)

Date: unknown
Instru­men­ta­tion: Con­cert Band
Dura­tion: 7:40
Lev­el: 5

Score preview

Notes on the Savazzini, Sinfonia

Fed­eri­co Savazz­i­ni (1830–1913) was an active con­duc­tor in nine­teenth cen­tu­ry Italy and at the time he wrote this Sin­fo­nia he gives his posi­tion as “Con­duc­tor of the Ban­da Nazionale of Castell’Arquato.” Castell-Arqua­to is a town near Par­mi and home town of Lui­gi Illi­ci, known for his libret­to work for Puccini.

Savazzini’s name appears in a dis­pute regard­ing the hir­ing of the mae­stro di musi­ca in Bus­se­to, Italy. Ver­di was much involved in this dis­pute as he was strong­ly advanc­ing the can­di­date, Emanuelie Muzio, and he remind­ed the local offi­cials that Muzio had been exten­sive­ly exam­ined for this posi­tion. Muzio, Verdi’s long­time friend and only stu­dent in fact became a dis­tin­guished con­duc­tor of opera in Brus­sels, Lon­don and in New York City. Ver­di had want­ed Muzio to go to Cairo to con­duct the pre­miere of his opera Aida. In the end anoth­er Ital­ian con­duc­tor made the trip, Gio­van­ni Bottesin. With regard to the Bus­se­to posi­tion, Ver­di gave up in dis­gust when a new can­di­date, Fed­eri­co Savazz­i­ni, had been nom­i­nat­ed yet had not been examined.

Savazzini’s Sin­fo­nia for band is ded­i­cat­ed to Vit­to­rio Emanuele II (1820–1879), King of Italy, a title he assumed in 1861 as the first king of the uni­fied nation of Italy.

Orig­i­nal Instru­men­ta­tion (spellings as in auto­graph score)

Clar­i­no in La b
Clar­i­ni in Mi b
Clar­i­ni 1, 2, 3 in Si b
Cor­net­to in Mi b
Cor­net­to in Si b
Trom­ba 1, 2, 3 in Mi b
Genis 1, 2 in Mi b
Corni 1, 2, 3, 4 in Mi b
Flicorno Bas­so in Si b
Trom­boni 1, 2, 3 (in C)
Bom­bardi­no 1, 2 (in C)
Bom­bar­di­ni (in C)
Bassi pro­fun­di (in C)
Cas­sa e Tamburno

It is not unusu­al to find among nine­teenth cen­tu­ry Ital­ian com­posers who only rarely wrote for the band evi­dence of some con­fu­sion regard­ing even the names of the instru­ments. Here, for exam­ple, the three “Clar­i­ni” parts in Bb on the page look clear­ly like clar­inet parts, and not some form of trum­pet. Since flutes and oboes are miss­ing in this score, we have con­struct­ed them from the Ab and Eb small clar­inet parts, since, in our view, those instru­ments are aes­thet­i­cal­ly questionable.

The Genis was a kind of (now extinct) alto horn in Eb, which we have log­i­cal­ly giv­en to the Eb sax­o­phone. The two Bom­bar­di­ni parts in C, bass clef, we have giv­en to bas­soons. Bassi pro­fun­di is of course the mod­ern tuba. The Cas­sa, or bass drum, at the time was assumed to include the cym­bals, but we have used more discretion.

As is also the case with com­posers writ­ing for wind instru­ments with unusu­al trans­po­si­tions, one often finds mis­takes as was fre­quent­ly the case in this composition.

David Whitwell
Austin, 2014