Louis-Philippe Laurendeau (1861 – February 13. 1916) was a Canadian composer, bandmaster, and arranger who also held an editorial position with Carl Fischer, the New York music publishers. Born at St-Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada, in 1861, Laurendeau produced mostly compositions and arrangements for concert or military band, such as the Stampede Galop for wind ensemble, which were published primarily by Fischer and Cundy-Bettoney. He also composed works of specific Canadian interest, such as Shores of the St Lawrence, a medley for band, and Land of the Maple, Opus 235, a march. He wrote, as well, on music pedagogy, including volumes on band instruction and arranging for band, the best known of which was The Practical Band Arranger: a systematic guide for thorough self-instruction, in 1911. He occasionally wrote under the pseudonym, Paul Laurent.
Laurendeau is most familiar to audiences throughout the world through his band arrangement of Czech composer Julius Fučík’s 1897 military march, Entrance of the Gladiators (originally entitled Grande Marche Chromatique, op. 68). Laurendeau arranged the march for American wind bands, and Carl Fischer published this version in 1901 under the title “Thunder and Blazes.” It was during this period that the song gained lasting popularity as a screamer march for circuses, often used to introduce clowns. The work is the best-known circus march in the world and has become a musical icon for that form of entertainment. Laurendeau’s version was also transcribed for fairground organs. Laurendeau died at Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on February 13, 1916.
My collection includes the following work by Louis-Philippe Laurendeau:
Thunder and Blazes (same as Entry of the Gladiators by Fucik).
—material selected, adapted, and edited from several different sources