Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani

Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani

Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani, with an audio CD, contains authentic parts for 57 of the most-requested audition excerpts for timpani. The enclosed 78-track audio CD includes these excerpts played by major orchestras, plus 21 play-along practice tracks. This unequaled collection also has comments and performance suggestions by Randy Max, timpanist of the Rotterdam Philharmonic, and includes detailed tuning plans, advice for practicing timpani and ear training, and historical information. This unique book with audio provides indispensable audition preparation material for timpanists of all levels, from student to professional.

Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani is published by Theodore Presser Company, and is available from music stores and online music sellers around the world, and can also be purchased by clicking here.

Click on the image below to read the “5 cups” rated review at the Drummer Cafe website:

Randy Max on Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani:

“Two of the most time consuming aspects of preparing for an audition are to collect all of the parts together, and to get a good recording of each piece. For many years it has been my dream to put together a collection of parts to the standard timpani audition repertoire, complete with the finest recordings ever made of them.

In my new book ‘Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani, with an audio CD of orchestral performances of each excerpt, plus practice tracks’ you will find just that (and much more).

The CD begins with the impeccable St. Louis Symphony recording of the excerpt from Barber’s Medea, and concludes 77 tracks later with a dramatic performance of the excerpt passage from Siegfried’s Funeral March from Wagner’s Götterdämmerung, played by the Berlin Philharmonic and von Karajan. All of the recordings presented on the CD are, in my opinion, the best of the best.

The CD also features many ‘practice tracks’ which are a combination of live playing and orchestral sound samples.  These tracks make it possible to practice excerpts such as the last page of Stravinksy’s The Rite of Spring with an orchestra, in a very slow tempo, and gradually work up to performance tempo.  Other practice tracks on the CD include the 4thmovement timpani passage from Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra played by a live viola section; Bartók’s Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta (2nd movement); and Barber’s Medea’s Meditation and Dance of Vengeance.

An important aspect of auditioning is to play the excerpts in a generally acceptable tempo. However, what is an acceptable tempo for an excerpt such as the opening bars of Mozart’s Symphony No. 39? There is no tempo marking printed in the score, and recordings of this work vary by as much as 90 beats per minute! In the book you will also find tempo lists showing the range of tempi in which these excerpts have been performed by a wide variety of famous conductors and orchestras.

For the pedaling excerpts by Barber, Bartók, and Strauss, included are up to 3 different tuning plans, marked clearly in both American and German set-up. For some of the excerpts I have included the preferred tuning plans and stickings of famous timpanists such as Gerald Carlyss, Cloyd Duff, Saul Goodman, Fred Hinger, Richard Hochrainer, Rick Holmes, Roland Kohloff, and Jan Labordus.

Historical information such as a brief biography of each composer and my ‘program notes’ for each of the pieces in the book are also included, as well as sections on practicing timpani parts and excerpts, practicing for an audition, and practicing ear training (solfège).

Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani is a project I have worked on for many years. I hope that you will find the vast amount of information in the book, and the many amazing performances on the CD, to be interesting, educational, and enjoyable.”

Copyright © 2024 Randy Max