David Gillingham has masterfully merged the Christmas carols "I Saw Three Ships" and "In the Bleak Midwinter" to create an original, rollicking arrangement for 6-part adaptable wind band that students & audiences will find irresistible on a holiday concert.
Genre: 6-Part Flex Band | # of Players: 6+
Series: The SpectraFlex Series
Level: 3 | Duration: 2:50
Transposed Score (showing all transposed parts)
Condensed Score (only "C" parts)
(2 copies of each of all parts for each listed instrument)
Part 1: Piccolo (opt.)/Flute, Oboe, B-flat Clarinet
Part 2: Flute/Oboe, B-flat Clarinet, E-flat Alto Saxophone
Part 3: B-flat Clarinet/Trumpet, E-flat Alto Saxophone, F Horn
Part 4: B-flat Clarinet/Trumpet, E-flat Alto Saxophone, F Horn
Part 5: B-flat Tenor Saxophone, F Horn, Trombone/Euphonium/Bassoon
Part 6: B-flat Bass Clarinet, E-flat Baritone Saxophone, Trombone/Euphonium/Bassoon, Tuba, Double Bass (optional)
Percussion Parts (100% optional)
Timpani (4 drums)
Percussion 1: Bells [shared], Xylophone, Ribbon Crasher
Percussion 2: Vibraphone, Claves, Marimba (4-oct.) [shared]
Percussion 3: Marimba (4-oct.) [shared], Crash Cymbals, Bells [shared]
Percussion 4: Tambourine, Suspended Cymbal, Bass Drum [shared]
Percussion 5: Bongos, Snare Drum
Percussion 6: Congas (2), Bass Drum [shared], Triangle, Bells [shared]
Three Ships is based on two traditional Christmas carols of contrasting mood, "I Saw Three Ships" and "In the Bleak Midwinter." The first is lilting and upbeat while the latter is somewhat melancholy and heartfelt. "I Saw Three Ships" dates back to the 17th century and "In the Bleak Midwinter" is based on a poem written by Christina Rossetti in 1872, and later set to music by Gustav Holst in 1906 (The English Hymnal). The work begins with both carols being stated followed by a short development section featuring the percussion. Then, in “tour-de-force” style, a slightly modified version of "I Saw Three Ships" is combined with "In the Bleak Midwinter." A short coda stating the final phrase of "I Saw Three Ships" concludes the piece in upbeat style.
ABOUT THE SERIES
The SpectraFlex Series for adaptable wind band offers flexibility with pieces across all grade levels, featuring traditional high-to-low scoring with 5 or 6 parts and optional percussion. Each part is transposed and playable by a multitude of wind or keyboard percussion instruments while maintaining the spectrum of sound we have grown to love about the wind band.