Overture: St. John's, 1828
for winds

Ben Bolden
Ben Bolden
Composition Date: 2010
Duration: 00:05:27
Genre: Orchestra / Large Ensembles, Concert Band / Large Wind Ensembles


Instrumentation Set Number 1:
  • 2 x Flute
  • 1 x Oboe
  • 3 x Clarinet
  • 1 x Bass clarinet
  • 1 x Bassoon
  • 4 x Saxophone
  • 2 x Horn
  • 2 x Trumpet
  • 3 x Trombone
  • 1 x Baritone/Euphonium
  • 1 x Tuba
  • 1 x Timpani
  • 4 x Percussion
Instrumentation Set Number 2:
  • 1 x Band
Click here to download full work (7.15 Mb - Not printable)

Programme Note:
When European settlers first arrived in Newfoundland, on the eastern coast of the new world, they encountered the Beothuk people.
By 1829, the last Beothuk was dead.
Some years ago I composed a music theatre piece based on the tragic yet fascinating events surrounding the final years of Shanawdithit, the last Beothuk, and her people.
This piece of music is derived from the opening scene of that opera. What I originally created for voices and orchestra, I re-arranged for Wind Ensemble. This is the music that sounds as the curtain rises, to reveal:
A seedy St. John's street, foggy. Evening. September 1828.
A single skin drum sounds a slow and ominous four-beat pattern. The curtain opens on a dirty, slovenly, evil, drunken, and lecherous St. John's street. Close to the harbour, it teems with those who make a living from the sailors who have come
ashore. The beat of the drum remains steady, but the rhythm changes to that of a 6/8 bodhran rhythm. The music is in a minor mode, Celtic and fast. The harbour parasites sing; they sell their wares, the dark rum, and themselves...

Premiere Information:
Farquar Auditorium
University of Victoria Wind Symphony

Conductor: Gerald King


  • Call Number:
  • MI 1800 B687ov
  • Genre:
  • Orchestra / Large Ensembles, Concert Band / Large Wind Ensembles
  • Date of Acquisition:
  • September 9, 2010
  • Type:
  • Print-music, Published by CMC
  • Physical Description:
  • 1 score (20 p.) ; 28 cm.
    20 Pages
    Height: 28 cm
    Parts page count: 51
    26 parts ([51] p.) ;
    Height: 32 cm
  • Additional Information:
  • Wind ensemble

    Standard Instrumental Grading System: Level 5
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Overture: St. John's, 1828 for Winds: Score
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Overture: St. John's, 1828 for winds by Ben Bolden (Score)
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Overture: St. John's, 1828 for winds by Ben Bolden (Score and Parts)
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