Music of the Spheres wins major US award

Discussion in 'Bandroom News - User Submitted' started by Anglo Music Press, Jan 13, 2006.

  1. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Well-Known Member

    Between the Moon and Mexico

    The US National Band Association selects Philip Sparke’s MUSIC OF THE SPHERES as the winner of the 2005 NBA/William D. Revelli Memorial Band Composition Contest.

    The NBA Composition Contest has awarded prizes since 1977. It is the desire of the National Band Association that winning compositions reflect its mission in helping further the cause of quality literature for bands in America. Additionally, works chosen as winners should be those not only of significant structural, analytical and technical quality, but also of such nature that will allow bands to programme them as part of their standard repertoire. As a result, a glance through the list of past winners will reveal some very familiar names, many of whom have gone on to write major film scores for many Hollywood films.

    Each year the contest receives approximately 50-70 entries from all over the world. Entries range in scope and quality from middle school level marches to lengthy and sophisticated symphonies. The full list is evaluated by a committee of graduate students and band directors and is narrowed down to a list of 6-8 finalists that are taken to Chicago each December for the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic. There, a panel of leading public school, university and military band directors meets to determine a winner. In 2005 it was Philip Sparke’s thrilling ‘Music of the Spheres’ that saw him take the first prize and add his name to an illustrious list of former winners. The composition drew high praise from the adjudicators and gave Philip Sparke his second prestigious band composition award following the Sudler Prize, which he won in 1997.
  2. JR

    JR Member

    music of the spheres

    I would like to be one of the first to congratulate Philip on this award. Music of the Spheres is a truly brilliant composition. Every time I have heard the piece, whether in live competition e.g. Stavanger at the European, Dalewool Auckland at the NZ championships or on CD (YBS) I have been both excited and moved by the power of the music
    The piece deserves to be ranked as one of the classics of the repertoire in the last 40 years alongside the best of Eric Ball, Gilbert Vinter, Phil Wilby and Edward Gregson
    Given the extremely colourful and descriptive nature of "Spheres" has Philip ever been offered any film scoring work? - I know past winners of this award, well known in banding have gone on to write film music e.g. Bruce Broughton
    Congratulation again - i hope the piece finds the biggest posible audience, not just as a test-piece!

    John Roberts
  3. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    Washington, DC, USA
    Congratulations to Mr. Sparke! :clap:

    This is most impressive, particularly since the piece was going up against concert and wind ensemble music to win the award, and most of those making the decision are not really conversant with the English-style brass band.
  4. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    Nice one :tup ​

    I know Mr S. regularly scores his compositions for both brass and wind bands - was it the brass or wind band version that won?
  5. Straightmute

    Straightmute Active Member

    Congratulations Philip! 'Spheres' is a terrific piece which fully deserves this recognition.

  6. dyl

    dyl Active Member

    Thoroughly deserved Mr. S! Already one of my best pieces ever - and a testament to it's appeal is that my 5 and a half year old son also loves it!

    Superb piece of music.
  7. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    I thought it was the wind band version (read it on another website)...

    Congratulations witht the award anyway. I heard the piece live a couple of times already (Willebroek, Treize Etoiles, BB Limburg, YBS on CD), and it's an amazing piece! I haven't heard the wind band version yet. Has anyone recorded it?
  8. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

    ...and rightly deserved too. It's the best piece, EVER...

    Looking forward to your next "big piece" Mr Sparke, Sir!! :)
  9. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Well-Known Member

    Between the Moon and Mexico
    Thanks for your comments. It was in fact the concert band version. It has been recorded; have a look at this page for details:-
  10. persins

    persins Member

    Reading, England
    Well done Mr. S!!
    I played Music of the Spheres (Brass band version) at the Scottish Open with SWT Woodfalls. I absolutely love it. I think it's brilliant from start to finish! It certainly did us proud as we came 3rd. Kirtintilloch also played it and came 2nd!
    If the concert band version is anywhere near the brass band one, then the award is richly deserved.
    Congratulations once again.

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