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You're listening to music by Don Gillis and the very first sound you will hear will be a small minuet trying to make up its mind all. The music you're hearing is from menu etc.. A bit of whimsy about a tiny minuet who isn't quite sure whether to stay that way. Hi this is Don Gillis. Welcome once again to another session of my music brought to you each week by the national educational radio network. For those of you who are joining us for the first time let me explain that I'm sitting here in the relative quiet of my apartment quiet That is unless a low flying jet comes over or horn honks down on the Henry Hudson Parkway and each week I write and speak the words you are now hearing about the music you would hear on these broadcasts.
Music which incidentally I've written and in the case of the menu etc. also conducted it. On this program we're going to go back to our high five bandstand and select music played by bands first by the National High School band of Iraq and then the University of Illinois band. And finally the United States Army Band and to begin our program we're going to hear Marge played for us for the National High School band in Iraq and under the baton of Dr. George C. Wilson. As I said it's a march but you're not likely to get a chance to march to it unless you're in a marching mood right now in your own living room for this march was one design for stage performance instead of that of the football field. In short it's a concert March which simply means that there's more to it in length than the average football March. Not that I'm snobbish understand but this one runs too long to print on the average sized paper used by marching bands. So with that highly technical explanation out of the way I'll invite you to listen to my concert March and you can even march
through it if you really want to. The mighty Mac. And that yeah yeah that.
And. The old man who owned land who the young man. Man now.
I mean. You.
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah yeah. Yeah. Yeah yeah I am. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah yeah. Dr. George C. Wilson has just conducted the National High School band of Interlochen and the mighty
Mac a march for concert band written by your host and commentator of the series. Don Gillis for the feature work of our broadcast we're going to hear music originally written as a ballet but using band instead of orchestra as a musical medium. The title of the work was simply ballet for a band. It's a general theme the days of the frontiersman of America's great north west days when men and women of giant stature pioneered our land and left their courage and strength in the soil. As Americans met the challenge of the West and built new states and found new frontiers. I have a sort of feeling that a lifer band might be very interesting. I had seen a few performances of scores of Standard Works transcribed for band used in Bowie. But I wanted to try to create an entirely new one. I did but I can't really say that I was highly successful in my dream to move the band into the pit and replace the orchestra. Well there's only been a few performances of the score as a ballet to date. Not
to compare at all with the number of concert performances the composition his hand. In the performance would be here. Dr. Mark Hines Lee conducts the University of Illinois band in ballet for a band the frontiersman. Think the thing.
I am.
You're. Right. The earth the earth the earth
the earth. The front here isn't a ballet for a band performed by the University of Illinois band under the baton of its conductor Dr. Mark Hines Lee. Music by Don Gillis continues now with a bit of whimsy which I call the menu etc.. I don't know for sure except to me it sounded like a good title for these that has a theme which seems to be
highly dissatisfied with itself. It began slowly as if it were finally going to get up the menu at Temple and then suddenly goes off into a an entirely different direction altogether. And since it does this several times it just seemed like the logical description of a minuet that couldn't make up its mind. In this performance I'm conducting the United States Army Band in menu etc.. Right.
Right. Menu etc. music composed and conducted by your host and commentator Don
Gillis is the final composition on this the sixth program of our broadcast series brought to you each week by the national educational radio network. I hope you enjoyed our brief band concert. Frankly I did not because I wrote the music either because it's a thrilling experience always for me to hear fine performances by great bands such as the National High School band of Iraq and the University of Illinois band and of course the United States Army Band. My own music education got started back in Cameron Missouri many years ago when the local rotary club organized a boys band and a man named Ray Neff waved his baton over what must have been the squirmy as a bunch of kids ever to blast away the podium. But wait he did and a lot of youngsters in Cameron Missouri learned to play instruments and to enjoy the thrill of making music together in high school we had an orchestra. But the town band was still the big musical delight for me and of course in college it was again the band the famed Texas Christian University horn prog
band along with the equally good hundred and eleventh medical regiment band of the Texas National Guard. In tribute to Claude Samaras of Texas Christian University and to Major Cecil meadows of the National Guard Band. Let me say that I gained very much experience not only in playing but in having my early arrangements and compositions performed. And when I became band director both of those organizations I kept right on writing for this wonderful instrument the band. One thing for sure the American composer who complains about not getting any performances ought to take time out to write something for a band. He'll get performed and more than likely published. Sometimes when I see articles on the dilemma of the American composer and read materials on the fact that our symphony orchestras play only seven or eight percent of American music on their programmes I sort of shrug off the complaints of the writers and mentally suggest to them that they should turn their efforts to a wonderful collection of organizations who would welcome their
creative energies. The American bands. But enough of bands for now let's talk about next week's program. I've decided to try something a bit out of the ordinary to schedule three movements of three symphonies and so next week we'll hear the In Memoriam from my symphony number five. The Blues from Symphony Number 6 and the prayer in him for a solemn occasion for my Star-Spangled symphony. So if you're in a mood for music on the quiet side be with us won't you. I do enjoy your cards and letters and I appreciate the complimentary things you say. Sometimes I even agree with those of you who are Do It Yourself music critics. Anyway the main thing is keep listening until next week then this is done Gilla saying so long. This is the National Education all radio network.
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The music of Don Gillis
Music for marching band
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
Music for Marching Band. The Mighty Mac, by National High School Band of Interlochen; Ballet for Band by University of Illinois Band; Minuetcera by United States Army Band.
Series Description
This series features the works of Don Gillis; hosted by the composer himself. Most of the performances are conducted by the composer.
Broadcast Date
Media type
Composer: Gillis, Don, 1912-1978
Host: Gillis, Don, 1912-1978
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 64-24-19 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:29:01
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Chicago: “The music of Don Gillis; Music for marching band,” 1964-10-13, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed February 23, 2024,
MLA: “The music of Don Gillis; Music for marching band.” 1964-10-13. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. February 23, 2024. <>.
APA: The music of Don Gillis; Music for marching band. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from