The merengue has always captivated musicians, dancers, and listeners alike with its high energy and exciting rhythms. John Paulson’s original Merengue captures the irresistible charm and vitality of the traditional dance music, providing a fun, electrifying addition to any concert.
Genre: Latin American Music for Symphonic Band | # of Players: Standard
Level: 4 | Duration: 3:00
E-flat Clarinet (opt.)
B-flat Clarinet 1&2
Alto Saxophone 1&2
F Horn 1&2
Percussion 1 (Bass Drum)
Percussion 2 (2 Low-Mid Toms)
Percussion 3&4 (Claves/Snare Drum)
Percussion 5&6 (Cowbell/Tambourine)
Merengue was named the official music and dance of the Dominican Republic by Rafael Trujillo, the country’s dictator from 1930 to 1961. The music is very energetic and often virtuosic.
Dance partners hold each other in a closed position making their hips move side to side with knees slightly bent. Even though the tempo may be breathtaking, dancers keep their upper bodies majestic while slowly executing turns over four beats.
In his book Merengue: Dominican Music and Dominican Identity, Paul Austerlitz states, “We will probably never know with certainty the true origin of this music, but theories about it express deep-noted feelings about Dominican identity.”
The original merengue presented here tries to capture the irresistible charm and vitality of the traditional dance music.