Happy Flag Day

Everyone knows the concert band version of “Stars and Stripes Forever” by John Philip Sousa. Heard less often — probably because it’s so diabolically difficult to play — is the piano transcription by Vladimir Horowitz, which requires one person with ten fingers to cover all of the parts normally played by dozens of musicians on brass, woodwinds, and percussion.

(While picking through various performances of the Horowitz arrangement on YouTube, I found that he was not the only musician audacious enough to turn “Stars and Stripes Forever” into a piano piece. I found, among other things, a version for three pianists playing one piano, one for four pianists playing two pianos, and another for eight pianists playing four pianos — all of them delightful.)

7 Responses to Happy Flag Day

  1. bydesign001 says:

    Reblogged this on PUMABydesign001's Blog and commented:
    Happy Flag Day, America.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I reckon he has more fingers than I do!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Marvelous. Thanks for sharing. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Linda Goossen says:

    Wow! He is amazing! I shared it on FB! Thank you! God bless America!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Many thanks for sharing a fine performance of the pianistic rescue of *Stars and Stripes Forever* from trite band performances.  It reminds me of Beethoven’s variations on *God Save the King*. There is real music in some unexpected places, and real musicians can bring it out.

    Liked by 1 person

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