Comments by James Curnow:
This set of three large variations is based on the old English melody ‘Terra Beata’ (Beautiful Earth) (TB 186), associated with the words ‘This is my Father’s world’ (SB 43). From the opening quiet and reflective bars to the three dramatic, descriptive and contrasting variations, this composition attempts to capture the spirit of creation of this ‘Beautiful Earth’ as given to mankind by the Creator.
Originally commissioned by the Adult Band Conference, held at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois in July of 1986, the piece was originally conceived and scored for large brass choir and was premiered at an early-morning ecumenical worship service during the conference. Later, at the request of William Himes, Bandmaster of the Chicago Staff Band, Variations on ‘Terra Beata’ was rescored for traditional brass band instrumentation and premiered during the Chicago Staff Band’s tour of England in 1987.
(Medium) A level 4 difficulty rating brings very challenging rhythms to the piece. Syncopation will be freely used, as will the more extreme ranges for all instruments.