Premiere Arabesque


Composer: Claude Debussy
Arranger: R. Stevens
Ensemble: SATB Sax Quartet
Format: Score (9×12, 16pp) and Parts (9×12, 4pp)
Length: 4.5 minutes
Difficulty: Grade 4-5 (Moderate to Difficult)

SKU: 1170-4-1 Category: Tags: , , ,

Premiere Arabesque (1890)

Claude Debussy (1862-1918)

SATB Sax Quartet

Première Arabesque, by Claude Debussy, arranged for Saxophone Quartet SATB. The Premiere  Arabesque is one of pair of arabesques Claude Debussy composed when he was still in his twenties, between the years 1888 and 1891. Although an early work, the arabesque contains hints of Debussy’s developing musical style. It is one of his early impressionistic pieces. Debussy seems to wander through modes and keys to create an evocative scene through music.

The First Arabesque was originally in the key of E major but this arrangement for saxophone quartet has been lowered a semitone the key of E flat. Common time throughout, mostly and rhythmically straightforward but the tempo rises and falls frequently. Sometimes quite chromatic as it wanders through adjacent or remote keys. Parts are very independent. with a good deal of passing the famous arpeggiated melody between the soprano, alto, and tenor voices. A piece for a more experienced quartet. This arrangement includes a full score and soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone sax parts.

  • The range for each saxophone part is shown below.
  • Audio and score excerpts are available above.
  • Registered users can download a complete sample score and full length audio file of Premiere Arabesque on the ‘Samples’ tab.

Premiere Arabesque by Claude Debussy for Saxophone Quartet SATB

Claude Debussy was a popular French composer who, together with Maurice Ravel, was among the most prominent figures in Impressionist music. He was also one of the most influential composers of the early 20th century. Saxophone players know him for his Rhapsodie for Saxophone and Orchestra, a commission he somewhat unwilling accepted.


There are no reviews yet.

Be the first to review “Premiere Arabesque”

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Submit a Video or Audio

Submit a Video or Audio

Share a link to a video or audio when you perform this piece and receive a coupon for 15% off your next SAXpress sheet music purchase.

Premiere Arabesque by Claude Debussy for Saxophone Quartet

Claude Debussy (August 22, 1862 – March 25, 1918)

Claude Debussy was born on August 22, 1862 in France. He was the eldest of five children. At age seven, Claude started taking piano lessons which were paid for by his aunt. By the age of 10, Claude’s talent became evident and he entered the Paris Conservatoire where he spent his next 11 years. During his time in Paris, he studied composition, music theory and history, harmony, piano and organ.

After completing his Conservatory studies and travels around Europe and Russia, at the age of 22 in he won the Prix de Rome. This was a competition for many different composers and Debussy took home the top prize. This prize allowed him to study for two years in the Italian capital of Rome. While Rome, he studied Richard Wagner’s music and especially the opera Tristan und Isolde.

Years later he completed his opera Pelleas et Melisande. The success of this work earned Debussy great recognition. Over the next 10 years, he was a leading figure in the French music scene. Other works that he wrote include La Mer in 1905, Iberia in 1908, Images in 1905 and Children’s Corner Suite in 1908.

Debussy lead a turbulent personal life with many stormy relationships and public scandals. In 1908, Claude married Emma Bardac and the couple had a child together. They were married for the remainder of Debussy’s life.

In 1903, he was made Chevalier of Legion of Honor in France.  Debussy was diagnosed with cancer in 1909 and died in 1918.

Register or login here to access full length samples and other benefits.

You may also like…

  • Menuet from Le Tombeau de Couperin

    Not Rated

    Menuet from Le Tombeau de Couperin

    Composer: Ravel, Maurice
    Arranger: R. Stevens
    Ensemble: saxophone quartet SATB
    Format: Score (6pp) and SATB parts
    Length: 5 min. (all repeats)
    Difficulty: Grade 4 (Moderately Difficult)

    SKU: 1218-4 Category: Tags: , , ,
  • Gavotte

    Not Rated


    Opus 9, No. 2 (1879)
    Composer: Chaminade, Cecile
    Arranger: R. Stevens
    Ensemble: Saxophone Quartet SATB
    Format: Score (5pp) and SATB parts
    Length: 2 min. (all repeats)
    Difficulty: Grade 3.5 (Moderate to Moderately Difficult)

  • Le Petit Berger

    Not Rated

    Le Petit Berger

    from The Children’s Corner (1908)

    Composer: Debussy, Claude
    Arranger: R. Stevens
    Ensemble: saxophone quartet
    Format: Score (3pp) and SATB parts
    Length: 2 min.
    Difficulty: Grade 3 (Moderate)


Pin It on Pinterest

Share This