Composed 2011 for Concert Band and some bacon

The Bacon March (Yankee Doodle Delicious) was premiered on May 11, 2011 by the Fillmore Central High School Concert Band. Make sure your bacon is cooked to your liking when you perform, lest you be stuck with raw food…

This is what happens when you let high schoolers name your songs…

The Bacon March might have the most unique start point of all of my compositions: by the time my students had finished all of their writing for Symphonic Composition Project, my wife was nine months pregnant with our daughter Rosemary. Her due date was right in the middle of Christmas break, so everything schemed to work out perfectly for us to have time at home with our new family. That is, until Rosemary decided that she wanted to wait a while before she joined the world.

After eight days of waiting past Liz’s due date, we were more than ready to quit playing cards and start having a baby, and Rosemary finally decided to show up. However, she still took her time, and since we lived a block from the hospital, I decided to grab some work while we waited at the hospital. The introduction to the piece was written at my wife’s side, as we waited…and waited…and waited for Rosemary to finally be born*.

But onto the piece…

My love for bacon is no secret to anyone in the school. (In fact, as I write this, I’m about to head to Baconfeast, a bacon festival in Lincoln, NE). As we were working through the second draft of the piece, the kids suggested that I work some bacon into it somehow. Naturally, the best way to utilize bacon is to eat it, so at the fermata at the end, I asked one of my percussionists to bring me some freshly-cooked bacon during our concert. It was easily the tastiest concert I’d ever directed.

*Fun trivia: the song that was playing when she was born was “March of the Witch Hunters” from Stephen Schwartz’s Wicked.

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