Solemn Entry of the Riders of the Order of St. John
by Richard Strauss (1909), transcription by Chuck Boody. (Duration 6:30)
Commonly knnown as “Feierlicher Einzug,” the full title of this work is “Feierlicher Einzug der Ritter des Johanniterordens.” That would be “Solemn Entry of the Riders of the order of (St.) John.”
“Feierlich” may be translated in a variety of ways, most common being “solemn,” “ceremonial,” or “festive.” Most commonly in the context of music it seems to be translated “solemn,” the translation suggested here.
The work was originally scored for 15 Eb trumpets, 4 horns, 4 trombones, 2 tubas and timpani. This transcription closely follows the original in the way the brass is used and is complete without being cut in any way. There is an internal repeat that is left out since I judged it intended only to lengthen the piece properly when used as a procession.
The opening fanfare-like section is unchanged from Strauss’s work. The contrasting chorale-like melody is first set for woodwinds except for the horn interjections of material from earlier in the piece. Eventually the opening materials return combined with the chorale-like melody. The brass is brought back in at that point and the piece proceeds to the closing.
Those familiar with the version for brass quintet and organ arranged by Mac Reger will notice some fanfare material that is not in this transcription. That is because those interjections are the work of Reger and are not in the original Strauss score.
There are a couple of spots where alternate parts are cued in case the user is missing instruments. They should be left out if the other instruments exist. There is also an optional section for Trumpet 1 in an upper octave which duplicates the original. The addition of the woodwind parts makes this unnecessary, but it should be played if possible to help the tone color.
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Here is a recording of the Minnesota State Band playing this work.
This is an excellent transcription of a work that is typical Richard Strauss – epic in scope, somewhat long and drawn-out, but ultimately magnificent in presentation.
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