Brahms, Johannes (1833 – 1897)

Johannes Brahms was a German born composer and pianist of the Romantic period. Born in Hamburg into a Lutheran family, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna, Austria. His reputation and status as a composer is such that he is sometimes grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven as one of the “Three Bs” of music, a comment originally made by the nineteenth-century conductor Hans von Bülow.

Brahms composed for symphony orchestra, chamber ensembles, piano, organ, and voice and chorus. A virtuoso pianist, he premiered many of his own works. He worked with some of the leading performers of his time, including the pianist Clara Schumann and the violinist Joseph Joachim (the three were close friends). Many of his works have become staples of the modern concert repertoire. An uncompromising perfectionist, Brahms destroyed some of his works and left others unpublished.

Brahms has been considered, by his contemporaries and by later writers, as both a traditionalist and an innovator. His music is firmly rooted in the structures and compositional techniques of the Classical masters. While many contemporaries found his music too academic, his contribution and craftsmanship have been admired by subsequent figures as diverse as Arnold Schoenberg and Edward Elgar. The diligent, highly constructed nature of Brahms’s works was a starting point and an inspiration for a generation of composers. Embedded within his meticulous structures, however, are deeply romantic motifs. (source: Wikipedia)


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Ballade (Edward) – Opus 10, No 1
BB BE 120107 – $38.00
4′ 00″ – advanced

The Ballades, Op. 10 are lyrical piano pieces written by Johannes Brahms in 1854 and dedicated to his friend Julius Otto Grimm. Frédéric Chopin had written the last of his famous ballades only 12 years earlier, but Brahms approached the genre differently from Chopin, choosing to take its origin in narrative poetry more literally.

The first ballade was inspired by a Scottish poem “Edward” found in a collection Stimmen der Völker in ihren Liedern compiled by Johann Gottfried Herder. It is also one of the best examples of Brahms’s bardic or Ossianic style; its open fifths, octaves, and simple triadic harmonies are supposed to evoke the sense of a mythological past.

arranged by Michael Allen for Trumpet in E flat, Trumpet in B flat, 2 Flugelhorns, 2 Horns, 3 Trombones, Euphonium, Tuba, Timpani


Chorale Preludes, Opus 122

The Eleven Chorale Preludes, Op. 122 were composed in 1896 for organ. They are relatively short and based on selected verses of nine separate Lutheran chorales.

Chorale Prelude Number 8 – Es ist ein Ros Entsprungen (Lo, How a Rose e’er Blooming)
BB BE 071201 – $38.00
2′ 30″ – technically easy, musically difficult

arranged by Michael Allen for 11 piece brass ensemble: 1 Trumpet in B flat, 3 Flugelhorns, 2 Horns, 3 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Tuba

Chorale Prelude Number 10 – Herzlich tut mich verlangen (My Heart is Filled With Longing)
BB BE 121001 – $28.00
3′ 30″ – technically easy, musically difficult

arranged by Michael Allen for 11 piece brass ensemble: 1 Trumpet in B flat, 3 Flugelhorns, 2 Horns, 3 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Tuba


Hungarian Dances (without opus)

Published in 1869, the Hungarian Dances are a set of 21 lively dance tunes based mostly on Hungarian themes. Varying in length about a minute to five minutes in length, they remain among Brahms’s most popular works. Brahms originally wrote the version for piano four hands and later arranged the first 10 dances for solo piano.

Hungarian Dance No. 1
BB BE 120409 – $38.00
3′ 20″ – advanced

arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, B flat Piccolo Trumpet, B flat Trumpet, Flugelhorn, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba (optional triangle)

Hungarian Dance No. 3
BB BE 120406 – $38.00
2′ 30″ – medium

arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, 2 B flat Trumpets (one doubles piccolo), Flugelhorn, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba (optional percussion)

Hungarian Dance No. 5
BB BE 070703 – $38.00
3′ 20″ – medium

arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, 2 B flat Trumpets, Flugelhorn, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba

Hungarian Dance No. 7
BB BE 120410 – $38.00
2′ 00″ – medium

arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, B flat Piccolo, B flat Trumpet, Flugelhorn, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba, optional percussion


Intermezzo from 7 Fantasien, Opus 116

During the early part of his career, Brahms primarily composed chamber music, works for solo piano, and songs.  His first symphony wasn’t written until he was in his forties and it was during this stage o his life he wrote most of his orchestral music.  Later, he returned to the ‘simplicity’ of writing for the solo piano. His Opus 116 was written in 1892 when he was 59 years old.

Intermezzo Opus 116, No 4
BB BE 111205
3′ 10″ – medium

arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet (b flat alt), B flat Trumpet, 2 Flugelhorns, 2 Horns, 3 Trombones, Euphonium, Tuba


3 Intermezzi from Opus 119

The Four Pieces for Piano Op. 119, are character pieces composed in 1893, and are the last compositions for solo piano by Brahms. Each of the first three pieces is called an intermezzo, and the last a rhapsody. Brahms used the word ‘Intermezzo’ loosely, meaning anything which he regarded as neither capricious nor passionate. He completed these pieces in 1893 during a summer holiday, the first intermezzo being written in May and the following three pieces in June. (source: wikipedia)

Intermezzo Opus 119 No 1
BB BE 110101 – $38.00
3′ 40″ – difficult

arranged by Michael Allen for 2 B flat Trumpets (one doubles on piccolo), 2 Flugelhorns, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba

Intermezzo Opus 119 No 2
BB BE 110102 – $38.00
4′ 50″ -difficult

arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, B flat Trumpet (doubling piccolo), 2 Flugelhorns, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba

Intermezzo Opus 119 No 3
BB BE 110103 – $38.00
2′ 00″ – difficult

arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, B flat Trumpet (doubling piccolo), 2 Flugelhorns, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba


Waltzes, Opus 39 is a set of 16 short waltzes composed for piano four hands (i.e. duet) in 1865. These waltzes were also arranged for piano solo by the composer, in two different versions – difficult and simplified. The three versions were published at the same time, and sold well, contrary to the composer’s expectations. The waltzes were written while the composer lived in Vienna, a city where he would permanently settle in 1872. They were intended as a tribute to the waltz dance form which had become especially fashionable in his adopted city.

Waltzes Opus 39, Volume 1
BE 120302 – $50.00
10′ 00″ – difficult

Volume 1 comprises Waltzes 1 – 7, arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, B flat Trumpet (doubling piccolo), B flat Trumpet (doubling flugelhorn), Flugelhorn, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba

Waltzes Opus 39, Volume 2
BE 120303 – $50.00
10′ 00″ – difficult

Volume 2 comprises Waltzes 8 – 16, arranged by Michael Allen for E flat Trumpet, B flat Trumpet (doubling piccolo), B flat Trumpet (doubling flugelhorn), Flugelhorn, 2 Horns, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba