The Great Wall of China

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Price £22.50

Others in the series:

Friends In Step
Fiesta di Napoli
Dancing Centipedes
Bronco Ride for Junior S…
An Outdoor Suite
Hugh Bushell: A Piece of…
A Nautical Suite
Leap Frog
Adventures in Wonderland

The Recital Junior String Ensembles Series series

Recital Music publish a wealth of music for the junior string orchestra ensemble, in a range of popular styles and idioms. Our aim is to create a new and exciting selection of music for every level of string player, from beginner to professional, and to offer music which has great player and audience appeal.

The Great Wall of China is originally for double bass quartet was composed on 21/22 July 2016 and premiered by a massed bass orchestra at the Purcell School (Bushey, Herts) on Sunday 24 July 2016. In one movement and lasting around three minutes, it is aimed at the intermediate ensemble using only 1st and 4th positions employing a number of effective and evocative playing techniques including arco, pizzicato, harmonics, sul ponticello, percussion, col legno and Bartok pizz.

It was designed to introduce younger musicians to a number of playing effects, alongside accessible musical and technical skills, offering solo and ensemble opportunities for each player. The music begins with a slow and stately unison theme, which is repeated pizzicato, before the main theme is introduced against a lively and driving percussive accompaniment. The music has a drive and momentum which is eventually interrupted by a series of dramatic chords to emphasise the amazing history and grandeur of the Great Wall, with a recapitulation of the opening theme ending with a strong, dramatic and sudden unison chord playing Bartok pizz.

The Great Wall of China also exists in a version for violin quartet, also playable by massed violins.

"British double bassist David Heyes has been providing bass teachers across the world with excellent repertoire and teaching pieces for many years, through his publishing company Recital Music. The Great Wall of China started life as a double bass quartet and translates into an effective and memorable concert piece for Junior String Orchestra.
The piece is of substantial length, but provides an array of teaching points for this level. Each part includes extended techniques, which are presented clearly on the page and provide an accessible introduction to col legno, Bartok pizzicato and sul pont. for both the learner and the listener. The catchy melody is first played in unison, encouraging homogeneous bowing and secure intonation across the ensemble, and then repeated just enough times during the piece to become ingrained and familiar...The double bass section (all too often an after-thought in beginner ensemble publications) are given centre stage with an effective drum-kit style passage and plenty to play in first position.
As with all Recital Music publications, the printing is of high quality and the layout and stave size suitable for the ability level. There are some helpful bowings printed in the parts and the more unusual 'special effects' are clearly explained." [Gemma Ashcroft/ARCO - ESTA]

David Heyes studied double bass with Laurence Gray and Bronwen Naish and later at the Royal College of Music in London. He completed his post-graduate studies in Prague with Frantisek Posta (Principal Double Bass, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra). He has given recitals and masterclasses in 13 countries over the past few years and has been a juror at a number of international competitions, twice as chairman.

David has been Specialist Double Bass Tutor at Wells Cathedral School for 19 years and received a prestigious award from the David Walter Charitable Trust of New York for his pioneering activities as a soloist, teacher, publisher and commissioner of new music for double bass. He works with composers throughout the world and is particularly interested to expand the double bass repertoire, by commissioning new works and by rediscovering forgotten ones. Over the past 30 years he has commissioned more than 500 works, from beginner to virtuoso, and from one to twenty basses.

David has transcribed more than 200 works for double bass, many published by Recital Music, and in recent year has also composed a number of original works for double bass which have been performed in Britain, America, Venezuela, Turkey, Spain, Mexico, Germany and Czech Republic. David is self-taught as a composer and his music has been described as lyrical, evocative and accessible, but certainly of the 21st-century.


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Cat No. RM962
Supplier Code RM962
Price £22.50
ComposerDavid Heyes
CategoryJunior String Orchestra
SeriesRecital Junior String Ensembles Series
Difficulty level1 - 3
ISMN 979-0-57045-962-9
EAN-13 9790570459629
Weight 264 grams
Published 25th July 2017
Availability 3 in stock