Daniels’ Orchestral Music is the gold standard for all orchestral professionals—from conductors, librarians, programmers, students, administrators, and publishers, to even instructors—seeking to research and plan an orchestral program, whether for a single concert or a full season.
This sixth edition, celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the original edition, has the largest increase in entries for a new edition of Orchestral Music: 65% more works (roughly 14,050 total) and 85% more composers (2,202 total) compared to the fifth edition. Composition details are gleaned from personal inspection of scores by orchestral conductors, making it a reliable one-stop resource for repertoire.
Users will find all the familiar and useful features of the fifth edition as well as significant updates and corrections. Works are organized alphabetically by composer and title, containing information on duration, instrumentation, date of composition, publication, movements, and special accommodations if any. Individual appendices make it easy to browse works with chorus, solo voices, or solo instruments. Other appendices list orchestral works by instrumentation and duration, as well as works intended for youth concerts. Also included are significant anniversaries of composers, composer groups for thematic programming, a title index, an introduction to Nieweg charts, essential bibliography, internet sources, institutions and organizations, and a directory of publishers necessary for the orchestra professional.
This trusted work used around the globe is a must-have for orchestral professionals, whether conductors or orchestra librarians, administrators involved in artistic planning, music students considering orchestral conducting, authors of program notes, publishers and music dealers, and instructors of conducting.
David Daniels (1933–2020) was emeritus professor of music at Oakland University and conductor emeritus of the Warren Symphony, both in Michigan. In 2016 he was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the College Orchestra Directors' Association.
David W. Oertel is music director and conductor of the Austin Philharmonic and Starlight Symphony Orchestra. He has conducted youth orchestras, musical theatre, opera, community bands and orchestras, jazz ensembles, and silent film orchestras. Oertel was an adjunct faculty member at High Point University and North Carolina A&T University. Oertel is also the coauthor of Choral-Orchestral Repertoire: A Conductor’s Guide.
David A. Rahbee is senior artist in residence at the University of Washington School of Music in Seattle, where he is director of orchestral activities and chair of orchestral conducting. He is the recipient of fellowships from the American-Austrian Foundation, the International Richard-Wagner-Verband, and the Acanthes Centre.
While many orchestra librarians use this important reference work solely for looking up compositions and their timing information, I urge everyone to also utilize the comments in the Preface, as well as the many appendices. . . .I have often said a silent 'thank you' to David Daniels for his lifelong commitment to researching orchestral repertoire and making his information available to those of us in the orchestra world. Now I offer up a public " thank you": well done, David, and much appreciated!
Even in this age of online databases, I still am a frequent user of the print edition of Daniels' Orchestral Music. A quick grab to the latest edition, always nearby, is still one of the quickest ways to get the information that I need to do my job.
Since the day I started programming my seasons as a conductor, Daniels’ Orchestral Music has been an invaluable companion. To welcome this Sixth Edition is an opportunity to program with even more choice and accuracy. The digital edition is a wonderful tool for us all traveling musicians.
This is the indispensable reference not just for orchestral librarians, but for every conductor, personnel manager, artistic planner, production team, and program notes annotator. The Boston Symphony has multiple copies, to be replaced with this wonderful new sixth edition. David Rahbee and David Oertel continue to expand and improve while maintaining the standard set up by the late David Daniels—they always want to get it right, and they have.
Performance librarians can count on Daniels’ Orchestral Music to provide critical details about instrumentation, timing, and sourcing for an ever-increasing number of works. Since David Daniels and the current editors are committed to constant improvement, the book continues to be a vital resource, growing ever more valuable with each new edition.
I was introduced to the first edition of the Orchestral Handbook at the start of my career and have since treasured it and every edition published. The evolution of this sixth edition of Daniels’ Orchestral Music is symbolic of a determination to keep discovering the depth of symphonic repertoire. The attention to the fine details of composers’ works is a reliable and trusted resource.