AMAZING ... CHURCH IN THE DUNES : Commissioned by the City of Dunkerque’s Symphonic Wind Orchestra (France) in 2014, this original works takes its name from the origins of the city. Coming from the old Dutch and appeared in 1067 in the form « Dunkerka », it’s pronounced « Duyn Kerke » in Flemish, which means « Church in the dune ».
The history of Dunkerque (Dunkirk) begins around the year 800, with the creation of a fishing village on the edge of a natural cove. Currently the third largest port in France, its carnival is the most famous event in the city.
The Dunkirk Carnival is the whole of festivities that take place throughout the Dunkirk agglomeration around « Mardi Gras ». There are bands, in which people (« Les Carnavaleux ») parade through the streets behind the music led by a drum major. Jean Minne, one of the most famous of them, was the drum major of the « Dunkirk Fishermen's Group » for 30 years, under the name of Cô-Pinard II. Respected by everybody and accompanied by his canteen woman, the « Cô » walked proudly at the head of the group, guiding the masqueloures in the streets of Dunkirk, to the final rigadoon, in Place Jean Bart.
A hymn dedicated to this légendary figure of this carnival, « L'Hommage au Cô », was composed after his death. The melody is a cover of « Amazing Grace », one of the most famous Christian hymns in the English-speaking world, a symbol of peace and faith. He has since been singed by everybody at all the carnival's balls.
Inspired by the history of Dunkirk and its traditions, Jean-Philippe Vanbeselaere composed « Amazing ... Church in the Dunes » in which the theme of « Amazing Grace » is specially arranged in very varied styles, to highlight all the music sections of the Concert Band. Also invited to whistle or to sing the theme, the musicians develop throughout this composition a melting pot of contrasting and very rhythmic universes, by way of happily from Rock to Cha-Cha, from Swing to Pop-Music. As for the central part, it reminds (thanks to the use of a bewitching rhythmical ostinato) the most famous work of Maurice Ravel.
Score / AMAZING ... CHUCH IN THE DUNES
pour Orchestre d'Harmonie
Grade : 3
Duration : 13:30
Reference : EMP - WM 016S