A Fanfare is a relatively short piece of music
Music is an art form whose medium is sound and silence. Its common elements are pitch , rhythm , dynamics, and the sonic qualities of timbre and texture...

 that is typically played by trumpet
The trumpet is the musical instrument with the highest register in the brass family. Trumpets are among the oldest musical instruments, dating back to at least 1500 BCE. They are played by blowing air through closed lips, producing a "buzzing" sound which starts a standing wave vibration in the air...

s and other brass instrument
Brass instrument
A brass instrument is a musical instrument whose sound is produced by sympathetic vibration of air in a tubular resonator in sympathy with the vibration of the player's lips...

s often accompanied by percussion. It is usually intended for important social purposes, such as ceremonial
A ceremony is an event of ritual significance, performed on a special occasion. The word may be of Etruscan origin.-Ceremonial occasions:A ceremony may mark a rite of passage in a human life, marking the significance of, for example:* birth...

 events involving important people, as exclamations of significant activities during an event (such as with introductions and closings), or to precede announcements with the purpose of gaining the attention of the audience. Similarly, musical works themselves often begin, transition, or end with fanfares or fanfare-like themes. The term is also used symbolically, such as to describe occasions that are greatly publicized, even when no music is involved.

Fanfares originated in the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

; although popular depictions of ancient Rome
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

 frequently include fanfares, the evidence is slight. In 18th century France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 the fanfare was a movement with energy and repetition of notes, and fanfares of the modern description date from the 19th century, when they were composed for British
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

A coronation is a ceremony marking the formal investiture of a monarch and/or their consort with regal power, usually involving the placement of a crown upon their head and the presentation of other items of regalia...

s (such as Hubert Parry
Hubert Parry
Sir Charles Hubert Hastings Parry, 1st Baronet was an English composer, teacher and historian of music.Parry's first major works appeared in 1880. As a composer he is best known for the choral song "Jerusalem", the coronation anthem "I was glad" and the hymn tune "Repton", which sets the words...

's I was glad
I was glad
I was glad is an introit commonly used in the Anglican church, and also used as an anthem traditionally sung at the coronation of British monarchs...

for Edward VII) and other important occasions.

A "fanfare" can range from salient
Salience (neuroscience)
The salience of an item – be it an object, a person, a pixel, etc – is the state or quality by which it stands out relative to its neighbours...

Card flourishes is the term for visual displays of skill performed with playing cards designed to show the skill or manual dexterity of a 'Flourisher'. Card flourishes are primarily intended to be visually fascinating and to appear difficult to do....

es within a piece of music to an entire musical work itself, and therefore may vary greatly in duration, scope, instrumentation and compositional purpose.

Examples of fanfares as entire musical works include:
  • Fanfare for the Common Man
    Fanfare for the Common Man
    Fanfare for the Common Man is a 20th-century American classical music work by American composer Aaron Copland. The piece was written in 1942 for the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra under conductor Eugene Goossens. It was inspired in part by a famous speech made earlier in the same year where vice...

    , Aaron Copland
    Aaron Copland
    Aaron Copland was an American composer, composition teacher, writer, and later in his career a conductor of his own and other American music. He was instrumental in forging a distinctly American style of composition, and is often referred to as "the Dean of American Composers"...

  • Fanfare for a New Theatre, Igor Stravinsky
    Igor Stravinsky
    Igor Fyodorovich Stravinsky ; 6 April 1971) was a Russian, later naturalized French, and then naturalized American composer, pianist, and conductor....

  • Fanfare for St Edmundsbury
    Fanfare for St Edmundsbury
    The Fanfare for St Edmundsbury is a piece of music written by the British composer Benjamin Britten for a "Pageant of Magna Carta" in the grounds of St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds in 1959.-Technical:The fanfare is scored for three trumpets...

    , Benjamin Britten
    Benjamin Britten
    Edward Benjamin Britten, Baron Britten, OM CH was an English composer, conductor, and pianist. He showed talent from an early age, and first came to public attention with the a cappella choral work A Boy Was Born in 1934. With the premiere of his opera Peter Grimes in 1945, he leapt to...

  • 20th Century Fox Fanfare, Alfred Newman
    Alfred Newman
    Alfred Newman was an American composer, arranger, and conductor of music for films.In a career which spanned over forty years, Newman composed music for over two hundred films. He was one of the most respected film score composers of his time, and is today regarded as one of the greatest...

  • Icarus Dream Fanfare, from the Concerto Suite for Electric Guitar and Orchestra
    Concerto Suite for Electric Guitar and Orchestra
    -External links:*...

    , Yngwie Malmsteen
  • Victory Fanfare, from the Final Fantasy
    Final Fantasy
    is a media franchise created by Hironobu Sakaguchi, and is developed and owned by Square Enix . The franchise centers on a series of fantasy and science-fantasy role-playing video games , but includes motion pictures, anime, printed media, and other merchandise...

  • Fanfare for Orchestra, Nigel Keay
    Nigel Keay
    Nigel Keay was born in Palmerston North, New Zealand in 1955. He has been a freelance musician since 1983 working as a composer, violist, and violin teacher...

  • Liberty Fanfare
    Liberty Fanfare
    Liberty Fanfare is a composition for orchestra by John Williams. Written in 1986, the piece was commissioned to celebrate the centennial of the Statue of Liberty on July 4 of that year. However, the piece was actually premiered a month beforehand, on June 4, when Williams conducted the Boston Pops...

    , John Williams
    John Williams
    John Towner Williams is an American composer, conductor, and pianist. In a career spanning almost six decades, he has composed some of the most recognizable film scores in the history of motion pictures, including the Star Wars saga, Jaws, Superman, the Indiana Jones films, E.T...

  • Majestic Fanfare
    Majestic Fanfare
    Majestic Fanfare is a short piece of music written by the British composer Charles Williams in 1935. It was first recorded in 1943 by the Queen's Hall Light Orchestra conducted by the composer....

    , Charles Williams
    Charles Williams (composer)
    Charles Williams was a British composer and conductor, contributing music to over 50 films...

Fanfares today

Fanfares are commonly played as theme music for television and radio news programs. They are also frequently used as victory themes in video games, particularly role playing games.

Fanfares are also frequently heard in military parades and within marches, probably because of their history of significant brass instrumentation.

They are also used to introduce someone special or important.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.