The Music of Robert Nelson
Robert Nelson's music has captivated audiences, critics, and peers for over four decades.
Catalog
Orchestral Works

Compositions

• Old MacDonald’s Orchestra – A Young Person’s Introduction to the Musical Barnyard
3-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-3; Hp.; Str.
(Variations on “Old MacDonald Had a Farm”)
Commissioned by the Houston Symphony

• An American Anthem – Chorus/Orchestra
3-2-3-3; 4-3-4; Timp.-3; Hp.; Str.
A medley celebrating the American spirit and the contributions of all ethnic groups; orchestral version commissioned by the Houston Symphony and premiered with Newton Wayland, conductor

• A Nyw Werke is Come on Honde – Soloist/Chorus/Orchestra*
2-2-2-2; 2; 3; Hp.-Pno.; Str.
A cantata for Advent or Christmas; written for the Moores School Choruses and Orchestra

This work appears on the CD An American Voice, Troy 381, from Albany Records

• The Little Match Girl – Narrator and Orchestra*
3-3-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-3; Hp.; Chorus; Str.
Commissioned by the Houston Symphony

• Casey at the Bat – Narrator and Orchestra*
2-2-2-2; 2-3-4; Timp.-2; Hp.; Str.
Commissioned by the Houston Symphony

• Symphony: East of Eden 3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-4; Hp.; Str.
Commissioned by the Monterey Bay Symphony

• Concertino – Solo Baritone Saxophone and Orchestra*
3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-2; Pno.; Str.

This piece is available from J.W.Pepper

• Elegy: The Finest School – Tenor and String Orchestra*
Written for Joseph Evans

• A Little Symphony for Strings – String Orchestra*

This piece is available from J.W.Pepper

• Allegro Festivo – String Orchestra

• Allegro Concertanto 3-2-3-2; 4-4-4; Perc.; Harp; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• All Things in All Time – Narrator and Orchestra
Poems of Robinson Jeffers
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Perc.; Harp; Strings

I – Tor House
II – Birds
III – Rock and Hawk
IV – Tower Beyond Tragedy

Commissioned by the Monterey Bay Symphony Orchestra

• Up South – Jazz Ensemble and Orchestra*
3-2-2-2; 4 Horns; 5 Saxes, 4 Tpts, 5 Tbns; Timp, Set, 2 Perc.; Pno.; Strings

Commissioned by the Moores School Symphony Orchestra
This is a three movement symphony/tone poem that blends the drama of the history of the northern migration of American blacks with the development of jazz music. The three movements are titled “Roots”, “Renaissance”, and “Revolution”.

The work appears on the CD Shadows and Music, Troy 845, from Albany Records

• Transformations: Out of the Cool - solo jazz quartet and orchestra
Commissioned by the University of Houston Orchestra

• Concerto Africano – solo percussion and orchestra
Commissioned by the Scott Joplin Chamber Orchestra

• The Boy Who Hated Christmas – solo brass quintet and orchestra
Original story by Kate Pogue
Commissioned by the Chicago Chamber Brass

• Capriccio - Solo Violin and Chamber Orchestra
3,2,2,2;4,2;Celesta, Hp.; Strings

• Concertino for Piano and Chamber Orchestra
2,2,2,2;2,2;Timp.; Strings

• Danzas Fantasticas - Solo Piano and Orchestra
3,2,2,2;4,3,4;Timp.,2; Strings

• Suite from The School for Scandal
Fl., Ob., 2 Cl., Bn.; Hn.; Perc.; Strings

• Pierrot's Tanzlied - Solo Baritone and Orchestra
3,2,2,2;4; Hp.; Strings

• Stay Gold
3,3,2,2;4,3,4;Timp.,2; Hp.; Strings

Arrangements and Orchestrations


• Suite Joplin (“Pineapple Rag”, “Solace”, “Ragtime Dance”)
3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-3; Hp.; Str.
Commissioned by the Houston Symphony
Selections can be played separately or as a medley

• The Lone Star Pageant (Medley of “Dallas”, “El Paso”, “Streets of Laredo”, “Rose of San Anton’ ”, “Galveston”)*
3-2-3*-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-3; Hp.; Str.
*Bs. Clar. doubles Tenor and Sop. Sax
Commissioned by the Texas Music Festival Orchestra

• Vive La France (Medley of “Under Paris Skies”, “La Vie En Rose”, and “The Bicycles of Belsize”)*
3-2-2-2; 2-2-1 (Tbn.); Timp, Perc.; Harp; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• A Norwegian Rhapsody (Medley of traditional Norwegian music)*
3-2-2-2; 2-2; 1 Perc.; Harp; Strings
Commissioned by the Vituosi of Houston

• Virtuosi Variations on a Texas Anthem*
3-3-3-3; 2-2-4; 1 perc.; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• Three Shades of Blue – Jazz septet and orchestra
(Medley of “Blues in the Night”, “Mood Indigo”, and “C Jam Blues”
Jazz septet: trumpet, alto sax, trombone, tenor sax, rhythm
3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Strings
Jointly commissioned by the Monterey Bay Symphony Orchestra and the Orquesta Sinfonica U.N.T., Tucuman, Argentina

• Gershwin Medley - solo trumpet and orchestra*
(Medley of “Summertime”, “It Ain’t Necessarily So”, “Someone to Watch Over Me”, “Fascinatin’ Rhythm”, and “Strike Up the Band”
Written for John DeWitt

• Scenes from West Side Story - solo trumpet and trombone and orchestra*
Written for John DeWitt and Mike Warny

• Shades of Blue (Medley of “Serenade in Blue”, “Deep Purple”, “Bluesette”, “Mood Indigo”, and “Beyond the Blue Horizon”)
3-2-3-2; 4-4-4; 2 Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto

• The Exotic Ellington (Medley of “Caravan”, “Prelude to a Kiss”, and “African Flower”)
3-2-3-2; 4-4-4; 2 Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto

• Cole Porter on Broadway (“I Get a Kick Out of You”, “I Love You”, “My Heart Belongs to Daddy”, “Well, Did You Evah”, and “Begin the Beguine”)
3-2-3-2; 4-4-4; Timp-2; Piano, Harp; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• A Beatles Symphony (“Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”, “With a Little Help From My Friends”, “She’s Leaving Home”, “Eleanor Rigby”, “Tickets to Ride”)
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto
3-2-3-2; 4-4-4; Timp., Perc.; Harp; Strings

• A Queen Medley (“We Will Rock You”, “Keep Yourself Alive”, “We Are the Champions”, “You’re My Best Friend”)
3-2-3-2; 4-4-4; Timp, Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto

• An Abbey Road Medley (“Something”, “Here Comes the Sun”, “You Never Give Me Your Money”, “Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight”, “The End”)
2-2-2-2’ 4-3-4; Timp,. Perc.,; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto

• Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody 2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto

• How Sweet It Is (“When I Take My Sugar to Tea”, “Sweet and Lovely”, “How Sweet it Is”, “Sugar, Sugar”, “Candy”)
3-2-3-2; 4-4-4; Timp, Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• Like the Rolling Stones (“Satisfaction”, “Lady Jane”, “Honky Tonk Women”, “As Tears Go By”, “Start Me Up”)
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto

• The King of Pop (“Billie Jean”, “Ben”, “Beat It”, “Thriller”)
2-2-2-2; 4-2-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Orchestra Sinfonica Città di Grosseto

• Let It Be
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings

• A Little Beatles Music (“The Long and Winding Road”, “Octopus’s Garden”, “Norwegian Wood”) 3-3-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc. (2); Harp; Strings
Commissioned by the Houston Symphony

• The British Are Coming! (“Overture to Tommy”, “Nights in White Satin”, “Brown Sugar”)
3-3-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.(2); Harp, Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• Dark Side of the Moon (Pink Floyd) (I. Breathe/Time, II. Money, III. Us and Them, IV. Wots…uh the deal)
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• Mamma Mia/Dancing Queen

• A STEAM Overture (“Theme from Back to the Future”, “Theme from The Apollo File”, “Theme from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”, “Theme from Moulin Rouge”, “Theme from A Beautiful Mind)”
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• Warriors of the Silver Screen* (“Theme from Patton”, “Theme from The High and Mighty”, “Theme from M*A*S*H”, “Theme from Bridge Over the River Kwai”)
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings
Commissioned by the Virtuosi of Houston

• Songs My Mother Sang
         Solo Violin and Strings

• Mariachi Medley

• Cançionces Populares Mexicanos

• A Leaf – music by Paul McCartney, for String Orchestra

• Songs for Linda – music by Paul McCartney
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.; Piano; Strings

• Overture in the Italian Style (Largo al Factotum)
2-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp.; Strings

• A Christmas Memory (medley of popular Christmas selections including “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”, “Here Comes Santa Claus”, “Up On the Housetop”, “The Wonderful Toy”, and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”
3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-4; Hp.; Str.
Commissioned by the Houston Symphony

• The Boy Who Hated Christmas (Orchestra with narrator; original story by Kate Pogue, featuring the brass section)
3-2-2-2; 4-3-4; Timp., Perc.(3); Harp; Strings

• The Charleston

• Wide World of Sports Theme

• Mister Touchdown

• Sweet Georgia Brown

• Theme from Rocky

• All My Rowdy Friends

• Take the A Train

• Twist and Shout

• Mexican Hat Dance

• The Christmas Song

• Winter Wonderland

Vocal Solo with Orchestra

"Agony"

"All Time High"

“As Long as He Needs Me”

“Cool Yule”

“I Surrender”

“I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm”

“La Vie En Rose”

“Mamma”

“Me”

“On the Street Where You Live”

“You Raise Me Up”

“You’ll Never Walk Alone”

Favoritas Italianas (“O Sole Mio”, “Ritorno a Salerno”, “Faniculi, Fanicula”, “Care ri”)

“Santa Claus is Coming to Town”

“Oh Holy Night” “

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”

“1940s Jingle Bells” – solo Girls Trio

“Do You Hear What I Hear?” – Chorus/Orchestra

“It’s Christmastime!” – Chorus/Orchestra

 

• Christmas music for Orchestra or for Sing-along

“Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”
“Frosty the Snowman”
“Santa Claus is Coming to Town”
“Home for the Holidays”
“Joy to the World”
"It Came Upon the Midnight Clear"
"Adeste Fideles"
“Silver Bells”
“Deck the Halls” – Brass only
“Hark the Herald Angels Sing” – Brass only
"It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas"
"Winter Wonderland"

All 3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-2; Hp.; Str.

• Spirituals for Mezzo-soprano and Orchestra*

“A City Called Heaven” 2-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-1; Hp., Str.
“My Soul is Anchored in the Lord”
3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-3; Str.
Commissioned by the Texas Music Festival

This work appears on the CD An American Voice, Troy 381, from Albany Records

“Joshua Fit De Battle Ob Jericho”
“He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”
“Amazing Grace” – with Clarinet obligato
3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-2; Hp.; Str.
Commissioned by the Houston Symphony

• Creole Songs for Mezzo-soprano and Orchestra*

“Gué Gué Solingaie” 3-2-3-2; Tpt.; 4 Perc.; Str.
“Pauv’ Piti Mom’zelle Zizi” 3-2-2-2; 4 Hn.; 2 Perc.; Hp.; Str.
“Zozo Mokeur” 3-2-2-2; 4 Hn.; 2 Perc.; Hp.; Str.
“O Mu’sieu Banjo” 3-2-3*-2; 4-3-4; Timp.-4; Hp.; Str.
*Bs. Cl. doubles Sop. Sax
Commissioned by the Texas Music Festival

This work appears on the CD Shadows and Music, Troy 845, from Albany Records

• Selections from Kaleidoscope:
I-Good Morning,
II-Promenade,
III-The Hurdy-Gurdy Man,
IV-March of the Wooden Soldiers,
V-The Punch and Judy Show,
VI-The Clockwork Dancer,
VII-Lament for a Departed Doll,
VIII-Good Night.
3-2-3-2; 4-3-4; Timp-3; Hp.; Str.

Orchestrations of piano music of Eugene Goosens, written in the post-impressionist style, depicting the day of a child. These would be quite appropriate for children’s concerts.

 

*Recordings are available to the selections marked with the asterisk.

Posted: Nov-15-2018
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