Fanfare for a Festive Occasion

John Williams composed this work for the Boston Civic Orchestra and its conductor, Max Hobart, who premiered it on November 14, 1980. Something of a second cousin to Williams’ Jubilee 350 Fanfare, written earlier the same year, this work for brass and percussion runs about two and half minutes in length. Largely in C major, it opens with a fanfare led by the trumpets and trombones. Horns introduce a syncopated, mixed-meter second subject accompanied by timpani. Trumpets and trombones join the tune and then return to the opening fanfare. The second subject makes a brief return in the horns, this time accompanied by the full percussion section and dissonant, accented scale passages from the trumpets and trombones. The work concludes with a coda based upon the opening fanfare.


The San Francisco-area Bay Brass has recorded the work under the direction of Alisdair Neale for their 2011 CD Sound the Bells! (Harmonia Mundi 807556).

Sheet Music

The orchestral score and parts to this work are not commercially available, nor has any arrangement ever been published.