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Symphony in Three Marches

Nels Drue Daily, University of Nebraska - Lincoln


This symphony is in three movements and lasts about 25 minutes. The form of the music for each movement has been influenced by the marches of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Edward Elgar, John Philip Sousa, and Dimtri Shostakovich. The first movement is in a march form related to the music of John Philip Sousa: 1st strain, 2nd strain, trio, dogfight, trio dogfight, trio. This form has been adapted to merge with sonata form. Broad fanfares play a central role in the formal outline. They introduce formal sections similar to Beethoven's slow introduction in the first movement of the "Pathetique" sonata acting as indicators of formal construction. The second movement is a slower hymn or dirge, which is a form closely related to a march. In many cultures hymns or dirges are sung in a procession, or while walking or marching. This movement begins and ends with a sentimental hymn in the strings. In the middle section, the rest of the orchestra attempts to distract or undermine this hymn. The third movement is in the form of a "screamer," or circus march. These marches are very fast, chromatic, and meant to create a great deal of excitement. This march form has been adapted to merge with the scherzo and trio form of symphonic repertoire. Formal repeats are used in this movement that are elemental to the formal aesthetic. Fanfares play a similar role in this movement as in the first movement.

Subject Area


Recommended Citation

Daily, Nels Drue, "Symphony in Three Marches" (2012). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3503987.