Not to be confused with the film score, the Lord of the Rings Symphony was written between 1984 and 1987 by the Dutch composer Johan de Meij. This symphony is the first composition for symphonic band by de Meij, who studied trombone and band conducting at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague.
Each of its five movements illustrates a person or important episode from the trilogy by Tolkien. In the first movement, Gandalf is represented by a stately theme, contrasted with a wild ride on his horse Shadowfax. The second movement paints a picture of Lothlorien, with its beautiful trees, plants and exotic birds. In the third movement, the soprano saxophone represents the creature Gollum, with his mumbles, hisses, whines and screams as he searches for his cherished ring. In the fourth movement, the music takes us through the tunnels of the Mines of Moira and to Gandalf's battle with the Balrog, ending with a funereal march as the remaining travelers seek a way out. The final movement opens with a happy folk dance that expresses the carefree and optimistic character of the hobbits, followed by a hymn that symbolizes their determination and nobility. It ends peacefully, reflecting the last chapter of Tolkien's work, in which Frodo and Gandalf sail away over the horizon. --James Huff 23:37, March 28, 2007 (EDT) (from the program notes of The Claremont Winds, submitted with permission)