Thursday, September 6, 2012

Leroy Anderson's The Syncopated Clock

“A mouse trap placed on top of your alarm clock will prevent you from rolling over and going back to sleep”

2nd and 3rd grade music students are listening to and putting movement to Leroy Anderson's syncopated clock. The Syncopated Clock was completed in April of 1945. It is 2 minutes and 20 seconds long.

It was written in Arlington, Virginia while Anderson was stationed in Washington, D.C. in the Army and it was first performed at the Boston Pops "Army Night", May 28, 1945.

The original orchestral form of The Syncopated Clock was first recorded on June 18, 1950 in analog mono sound by Arthur Fiedler conducting the Boston Pops. It was first recorded by the composer in analog mono sound on September 11, 1950. The Syncopated Clock was re-recorded in stereo analog sound by the composer on June 26, 1959.

When Leroy Anderson was composing The Syncopated Clock, he came up with the title first!
..."because it incorporated an idea that I thought could be expressed in music. I noticed of course as everyone has, that there have been hundreds and hundreds, if not thousands, of tunes about clocks. It suddenly struck me that all these clocks were regular clocks, such as you hear everywhere. No one had written a musical composition based on a syncopated clock, that is a clock that beats to a syncopated rhythm. And the idea struck me as an attractive one, and I then sat down and wrote the music to with the title."---Leroy Anderson

Here's a video of the composition with a great view of the percussionist - an important member of the orchestra for this particular piece!!