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Fantasia on British Sea Songs

Arranged by Sir Henry Wood

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Fantasia on British Sea Songs

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Fantasia on British Sea Songs
Fantasia on British Sea Songs or Fantasy on British Sea Songs is a medley of British sea songs arranged by Sir Henry Wood in 1905 to mark the centenary of the Battle of Trafalgar. For many years it was seen as an indispensable item at the BBC's Last Night of the Proms concert. Henry Wood and the Queen’s Hall Orchestra at a Promenade Concert first performed them on 21 October 1905. It originally comprised nine parts, which follow the course of the Battle of Trafalgar from the point of view of a British sailor. Crowd participation is often noted in the fantasia performance during the Last Night of the Proms. Mock tears were shed by the audience during Tom Bowling, feet were stamped in time to the introduction of Jack's the Lad, a familiar tune which gets faster and faster, being followed by the honking of hooters and a clapping crescendo during the climax. Occasionally the orchestra has been known to deliberately perform this part out of tune in response to the audience. The frantic pace was then juxtaposed with solemn humming in Home, Sweet Home. This culminated in the "prommers" singing the refrain of Rule, Britannia. During the various solos, the performing artist often ad-libbed their own variation on the melody and various parts of the Fantasia were often repeated at the request of the audience, whose participation was usually encouraged by light-hearted mockery on the part of the conductor.

Arranged for Brass by Simon Wright for John Wallace and The Wallace Collection

7:00 Minutes

4 Trumpets
1 Horn in F
4 Trombones  
1 Tuba
Trumpet 1 doubles on Piccolo Trumpet
Trumpet 4 doubles on Flugel  
Trombone 2 doubles on Euphonium