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Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue (Trumpet Parts)

Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue (Trumpet Parts)

Gershwin, George

Arr. Bishop, Andrew

Ed. Andrew Bishop


  • Ensemble: Trumpet
  • Genre: Classical
  • Grade: 4
  • Duration: 18.0 minutes
  • Catalog Number: TSSP-GRB

This professionally re-engraved and transposed set of orchestral trumpet parts greatly eases learning and performance of the work.  Available as PDF download or hard copy (9" x 12"). You can buy the parts individually or as a package:

  • Trumpet 1 (Includes part in C, and part in B♭)
  • Trumpet 2 (Includes part in C, and part in B♭) 
  • Trumpet 3 (Includes part in C, and part in B♭)

Notes from the Editor

Because Gershwin's music is so often featured on pops-style concerts, I have elected to engrave this edition of Rhapsody in Blue for both C and B-flat trumpet in all parts.  

The original publication of Rhapsody in Blue featured the unfortunate practice of showing a key change once, and not continuing to show the key at the beginning of subsequent staves.  To remedy this, and for easy of reading, all key signatures have been deleted in favor of showing all accidentals.    

Superfluous cues in the original have been deleted, while additional helpful cues have been added.

The passage in Trumpet 1 from m. 481-86 has been altered to better reflect the musical line intended in the original Whiteman Band edition of Rhapsody in Blue.  It is the editor's belief that the Grofé orchestration assumed it unwise for orchestral trumpet players to continue the chromatic line up to concert D.  Modern Principal Trumpet players, however, should not have any problem continuing the line up, so it has been included in this edition.  To facilitate this, however, the material directly following for two measures at the [39] Grandioso, which originally occurs in Trumpet 1 and 2 has been reassigned to Trumpet 2 and 3.  

It should be noted that this edition is based directly on the original publication.  The current University of Michigan Gershwin Initiative is an ongoing scholarly examination of George and Ira Gershwin's music, and is producing the first Critical Editions of their music.  While I added one text indication based on the Critical Edition edited by Jessica Getman, my edition is in no way meant to supplant their efforts.   

The Andrew Bishop Orchestral Editions explore the concept of how these orchestral masterworks would appear if they were composed today.  There are myriad differences in how music is currently published compared to when many of these works were originally engraved.  “Tradition” is usually the (poor) excuse I hear when the topic of updating these masterworks is discussed – most often in reference to transposition(s).  As a performer and teacher, I remain committed to the practice of honing vigorous transposition skills.  However, there are many of these original engravings set in keys that are truly antiquated, and make almost no sense whatsoever to keep perpetuating.  Transposition, however, is the least of the issues most of these original editions suffer from.  Paper is no longer a premium and scarce product, and therefore the practice of cramming as much material on a page is not necessary.  “Readability” was obviously not a concern with copyists of the times, and it is my opinion that the music suffered because of it.  Therefore, a ”Bish Edish” (as they are popularly referred to) features many upgrades, including:

  • Judicious spacing throughout the engraving (not too cramped, not too open)
  • Correct enharmonic spellings of notes.  This is an unfortunate byproduct of writing in asinine transpositions.  A careful reconsidering of cue usage.  
  • Corrections of many inconsistencies between original parts and score, and even between parts themselves.
  • The addition of measure numbers, including helpful ranges listed under multi-measure rests.
  • Deleting key signatures and writing all parts utilizing accidentals only.
  • All parts are formatted for standard Concert 9x12 paper, and is best printed on that size. 

Reading it on 8.5x11 is not ideal, but the compression percentage isn’t too significant.  Similarly, reading it off a larger tablet (e.g. iPad Pro) doesn’t present any significant issues.

In some instances, there are other upgrades specific to individual works that will be mentioned within the respective product.  If you happen to find something questionable that you would like to bring to my attention, please feel free to do so at:  If it is something that I need to correct, I will be happy to do so and make sure you receive a corrected part/parts.  If you have other works that you would like to have a custom edition made, please also reach out with that as well.  

Andrew Bishop, Editor

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