Alfred's Pop Percussion Ensemble Series
Grade Level: 3 (Medium)
Star Wars Medley is a percussion ensemble arrangement, by Eric Kalver, of three of the most popular Star Wars themes from the original trilogy by the great film composer, John Williams: "Star Wars Main Theme," "May the Force Be with You," and "Darth Vader's Theme (The Imperial March)."
John Williams' compositions are instrumental to director George Lucas’s trilogy, but even when heard outside of the films, his music is loved and instantly recognizable by all generations. This arrangement, Star Wars Triology for nine percussionists, is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
This ensemble arrangement calls for nine players on the following instruments:
- Orchestra Bells
- Marimba 1
- Marimba 2
- Suspended Cymbal
- Snare Drum, Bass Drum
All of the mallet parts can be played with 2-mallets, however, both marimba players could perform their parts using 4-mallets. The snare and bass drum parts could be played by one player, if you had to, using a kick pedal on the bass drum.
I was surprised to not see timpani used in the arrangement. Personally, when I think of Star Wars music, I definitely think of timpani. Perhaps the arranger may have chosen to leave timpani out in an effort to keep the number of players to nine. There is certainly an easy solution; the suspended cymbal part, as currently written, could be played by the timpani player, or even the snare drum player.
NOTE: If you only have 7 players, one player can easily cover the snare drum, bass drum and suspended cymbal parts.