dedication: to Keith Wilson
Divisions was commissioned for the Yale Concert Band's Spring 1972 European tour (incomplete list of dates):
recorded live by Yale University Band, conducted by Keith Wilson (27 March 1972, QEH London)
released on Custom Fidelity CFS 3035 (LP)
Divisions was written for the Yale Band, and is dedicated to Keith Wilson, who has done so much to transform the traditional image of the concert band; from its association with football games and popular music, for which it is fitted naturally, he has developed it into a flexible and sophisticated ensemble of considerable musical resource. The piece is in one continuous movement, and falls into clearly defined sections, some of which are variations of one another, and some of which are contrasts. The title derives from the 17th century word for variations, but refers also to the division of the ensemble into five units. Two of these are alike, and contain both brass and woodwind; the other three consist of the family of saxophones, the group of double reeds, and the various kinds of clarinets available in the ensemble. Divisions is a kind of companion piece to my Antiphonies, which was written for the Yale Summer School of Music of which Keith Wilson is also director; it was given at Norfolk, Connecticut in August 1966 at a time when I was myself teaching at Yale, following on my period as a student there on a Harkness International Fellowship. Antiphonies was first performed in this country by the London Mozart Players under Roger Norrington in July 1970.
Paul Griffiths, The Musical Times, May 1972, Vol. 113, No. 1551, p. 479:
The Connolly piece - Divisions - treats the band just as a musical resource, making particular use of the large groupings of homogeneous instruments available. (...) Like other works by Connolly, Divisions has the form of a coherent mosaic of finely fashioned sections
Programme note source: QEH concert programme
Thanks to Thomas C. Duffy, Director of Bands at Yale; and to Stephanie Hubbard, Business Manager, Yale University Bands, for much information..