Today I want to share with you a fun little piece I recently performed with the OSU Wind Ensemble. Danzón No. 2 was written by the Mexican composer Arturo Márquez (b. 1950) in 1994 after a commission from the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
Rhythm, through tempo changes and strangely placed accents, is the driving factor in this piece. The style is based on a Cuban dance called danzón, which has a long history of syncopation, cross-rhythms, and fancy footwork. You can read more about it here.
*Side note: Márquez wrote Danzón No. 2 for a full orchestra, as shown in the video. Since then it has been arranged for concert band by Oliver Nickel.