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Trumpet Player

Director's Notes


The Magic of Ennio Morricone
and Rogers & Hammerstein

Welcome to today’s concert featuring “The Magic of Ennio Morricone and Rogers and Hammerstein.” The magic of the Italian film composer Morricone and the musical team of Rogers and Hammerstein lies in their abilities to compose beautiful melodies and tunes that audiences remember and carry with them throughout a lifetime.


Morricone partnered early in his career with film director Sergio Leone in the making of the

western film Once Upon a Time in the West. Since that time, the film genre of the “Western” evolved in large part due to the music Morricone composed to support the story and the director’s wishes. With the goal of making the screenplay better, Morricone continued to compose several western film scores with great success. Over time, great actors also worked with director Leone on these projects while Morricone worked behind the scenes in his studio, Henry Fonda, Clint Eastwood, Charles Bronson, and Jason Robards to name a few.


Morricone’s music can sometimes be harsh and abrasive, as required by the screenplay, but he also clearly had the ability to write beautiful melodies. Later in his career, Morricone partnered with American filmmakers to compose the music to The Untouchable’s and The Mission, selections that the SOSB will perform today from the Marc Reift Editions for band. Today the band performs one of his greatest tunes, “Gabriel’s Oboe” from The Mission.  This iconic tune has been a favorite of soloists all over the world.


Morricone won an Oscar for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. One of his fellow nominees included the great John Williams, no stranger to the Oscar stage.


The team of Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein is more familiar to American audiences for their achievements on Broadway and the silver screen. Robert Russell Bennett’s arrangement of the Sound of Music captures an array of tunes, as listed in your program, from the musical that will have you humming if not singing along. From the opening main title theme, to “Edelweiss” and “Climb Every Mountain,” the SOSB travels from Austria to the Swiss Alps with the Von Trapp family thanks to Bennett’s arrangement and craftsmanship of selections from the film score. Enjoy the journey!


“Collectively, the Rogers & Hammerstein musicals have earned Tony, Oscar, Grammy, Emmy, Pulitzer, and Oliver Awards.” As a clarinetist in the pit orchestra or an audience member in the theatre, I still remember the great tunes from Oklahoma, South Pacific, The King and I, Cinderella, and Carousel.


Hats off to the Magic of Ennio Morricone and Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein!



Danny Maddox Nichols, Music Director

The Southwestern Ohio Symphonic Band

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