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  • ACHILLES Concert Overture

    Here is a piece I recently revised and performed as part of publishing the sheet music:


    It is Vienna Instruments and mixed in MIR Pro Vienna Konzerthaus Conductor's position with Miracle Close Hall Enhance.  The instrumentation is:

    Flute 1

    Flute 2

    Flute Ensemble

    Oboe 2

    Oboe Ensemble

    Clarinet 1 doubled

    Clarinet Ensemble

    Dimension Trumpet Player 1

    C Trumpet

    B flat Trumpet


    4 Dimension Horns doubled to match 8 horn ensemble with four part divisi

    2 4-horn ensembles for two part divisi

    8 horn ensemble for unison

    Trombone ensemble

    Solo Trombone

    Contrabass Trombone



    Percussion ensemble

    Glockenspiel 1

    Chimes 1

    Appassionata Violins

    Orchestral Violins

    Appassionata Violas

    Appassionata Cellos

    Orchestral Basses

  • One of your better ones and that's saying something. Very crisp and totally evocative/cinematic, It could hypothetically adorn some big war Hollywood production with powerful heroic, as well as dark contemplative scenes!

    Alas, no ostinati...

  • Thanks Errikos - you see I thought of a title.  It was not actually about Achilles originally - mainly just about 12/8 time with some syncopation and a lot of modulation - but I was so wrathful at not having a title, Achilles suddenly popped into my mind.  

  • Love it, Bill!  I'm digging the contemplative mood around the 1:30 mark and the suspense at 4:40.  And, as always, the grandiosity of your orchestration shines through brilliantly.  Congratulations on another gem, and hope the sheet music is purchased and performed!

    All the best,


  • Thanks Dave.  This was originally written in 1982.   I only last month came up with that section you mentioned.  But throughout all that  time I had a feeling it should be revised... I guess I work somewhat slowly.  Need to speed things up probably. 

  • You're in good company...Faure did similar revising of his Requiem over a two decade period. As for writing it in 1982, I probably wouldn't have enjoyed listening to it then, as I was likely enjoying Sesame Street classics instead 😉 Dave

  • Another great tune, Bill. You told a big story in just a few minutes and swept me long every bit of the way...although for some reason, just listening to it made my lip swell up. Man, you know how to write gnarly horn parts! I would purely love to take a crack at 'em, but I would probably be like the horn player in the first reheasal of Don Juan, who asked Strauss what he had done to deserve this!

    I know you've heard this from me before but I really think this piece would work beautifully as a wind band composition. First off, it's a dramatic concert overture, which is absolutely the wheel house of symphonic band literature. Most of the main themes are carried by winds and percussion and the string sections would translate beautifully to woodwinds. I realize that writing for band doesn't have the cachet of writing for symphony orchestra, but we do have one small advantage for the contemporary composer...we actually play new music! Bands don't have centuries of standard repertoire that is the only thing our audiences want to hear. If a tune is good, we'll program it.

    Actually, I'm being selfish here. I'd love to play more of your music. Also, I would absolutely love to hear you bring the full power of your MIDI skills to bear on a wind band tune. I think it would jump to #1 on my play list. (WARNING! Mini-rant!!) Have you noticed that, in the vast VSL Demo Library there is one...count it, ONE...movement of one...count it, ONE...piece for band: an old Jay Bacal rendering of the March from the Holst Eb Suite. And as much as I admire Jay, this isn't even one of his best efforts. It seems that this is a market that VSL has very little interest in. They have all the necessary instruments, at least, which is more than I can say for the brass band instrumentation that is so poular in the UK. For that, they have next to bupkus. (End of Mini-rant)

    I sure hope you get lots of performances of this excellent overture, but I can't help thinking that the odds of this would be higher if it existed as a wind band composition.


    (BTW, I got your email and I'm working on an answer. Stay tuned!)

  • Thanks Tom, I was thinking that it might do better for band. I have the same attitude concerning band performances - unlike symphony orchestras, who have quite enough music and don't need anything more thank you very much - bands are always playing new things.  

    Also I wish VSL would do symphonic band sections.  Especially EPIC CLARINETS  - like a 6 or 12 player section!   I have done some work with doubling the 3-player sections but it is not the same as the big symphonic band sound. 

    In fact, if VSL sampled just an additional 12 clarinet section and a 6 flute section the symphonic cube would be a full concert band if you use the other solos, sections and ensembles with no doubling:


    11 flutes     

    5 oboes

    17 clarinets

    5 bassoons

    5 sax

    12 trumpets (with cornet)

    8 horns with full divisi

    5 trombones (with contrabass)


    2 tubas

  • Symphony HUGE Version/285498

  • Hi William, awesome piece of music. The interplay of ideas is very pleasing. Marvelous counterpoint in the slow section. 

    Regarding the "dislike" it is just one more symptom of our collapsing culture. Take away the anonymity and you probably would not see such stupidity. This is the same type of thinking that leads morons to deface buildings and entire neighborhoods with vulgarity and ugliness and claim it is art. No cure in this life. I put my hope in Heaven.

    In Achilles  I would have liked to hear more from the trombones, admittedly this is because trombone is my instrument. :-) I know they are playing during the tuttis, but I mean a little more often than just the tuttis.

  • Thanks Paul!  I shouldn't have mentioned the dislike!  Though I think you're right about anonymity.  

    I like that idea about more trombones.  Hmm....

  • William, its great to hear another one of your pieces.  Very refreshing to hear the use of dynamics, contrast and drama in music again.  So much more exciting than just Epic.  Thanks for posting.

  • Thanks Greg!  I appreciate your listening and commenting!  

  • Yet another triumph William. I must say that you never disappoint. I listened on my car stereo, as I usually do, and was just overwhelmed by a pincer movement of clever composition and skillful orchestration. It's funny you say 1982 because, for some reason, the old Battlestar Galactica TV show came to mind while listening. Not so much the main theme but just that style of arrangement. Oh! And the sound quality was just exquisite especially the lows. It was like a blockbuster soundtrack but without all the blockbuster reverb. Very crisp and clean. Well done.

  • Thanks Jasen. I remember Battlestar Galactica the show but not the music.  It was probably very good though.  

  • PaulP Paul moved this topic from Orchestration & Composition on