Two Preludes

For mallet sextet


Difficulty: Medium
Duration: 4:15 (total)

While Chopin’s Prelude No. 4 in E minor (Op. 28, No. 4) exudes melancholy and despair, its beauty is undeniable. In this arrangement, contrasting timbres of woods and metals provide a foundation for such effective colors as bowed crotales and chime tremolos. This is a great piece in which the small ensemble can refine their abilities to express through fluid, elastic tempo, as well as developing a keen ability to balance.

Debussy’s Girl With the Flaxen Hair, from his first book of piano preludes, is famous for its simplicity and remains one of the composer’s most popular works. This rendition for mallet sextet captures its warm lyricism through expert orchestration. And while retaining the nature of Debussy’s simplicity, this arrangement will still provide a good challenge for ensembles in creating a cohesive sum of their parts.

These two preludes have similar instrumentation and ensemble size allowing them to be performed as a complimentary set. However, each work may be performed separately with equal appreciation.

(photo credit: unknown)