Saturday, October 23, 2010

Marche des Parachutistes Belges

Based on the original title, the listener expects Marche des Parachutistes Belges to be a march with a European flavor. The thin scoring and folk song idiom of the first strain soon confirm the European origin. At the Trio, the same tune reappears as a counter-melody to a smooth-flowing melody. Pierre Leemans wrote the march in 1945 after a dinner with a group of Belgian paratroopers. As he was driven home later that night, the march melody came to mind and Leemans finished the other parts after reaching home. As Leemans explained, “Like all successful music, this tune flowed from my pen as water out of a fountain.” (Source: Band Music Notes, Norman Smith and Albert Stoutamire)