Fernando Sor – the March for solo guitar op. 1 no. 6


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This splendid military march for guitar by Sor appeared in London just a few weeks before the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. Sor had just arrived in London from Paris – how he got a ticket, when thousands of British were fleeing from Paris as Napoleon newly escaped from Elba approached, we’ll never know – and the streets of Paris and of London must have been full of detachments of soldiers, each marching with its own military band.

Those military bands used woodwind instruments and lots of brass, and that is surely what we hear in this piece – the full band in most of bars 1-14, then a different group of instruments in the minor at bar 15 followed by the melody in the treble at bars 16-18. The same pattern again at bars 19-22. There’s a shake-up with the change of key at bars 24-25 and a quieter part from bar 27, and the full band at the end of the piece.

This edition comes from the new 2019 second edition of Sor’s New Complete Works for Guitar edited by Brian Jeffery. The Introduction and Index to the entire series can be seen here on this site.