Moss, Katie: The Floral Dance


The Floral Dance by Katie Moss was her take on a popular Cornish theme.  It was a huge success for her and re-emerged in the 1970s both as an enduring brass band staple and an unlikely hit for Terry Wogan.  Great, light-hearted fun for wind quintet!

  • Instruments : Fl. Ob. Cl. in Bb Hn. Bsn.
  • Difficulty : C – approx. ABRSM Grade 5
  • Duration : 3’15”
  • ISMN : 979-0-708141-58-7
  • Portus Press reference : PPQ88


Think of the Floral Dance  and you’ll be forgiven for remembering Terry Wogan’s infamous Top of the Pops performance in 1978.  Or perhaps the timeless recording of it by the Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band, which was pipped to the No. 1 chart position by Wings’ Mull of Kintyre, no less.

But the roots of the Floral Dance  are mysterious and subject to confusion, even in Cornwall where it originated.  In May 1911 a young violinist and composer of light music named Katie Moss (1881–1947) visited the small Cornish town of Helston. There she witnessed the traditional Flora Day celebrations and was inspired to create her own take on the simple, infectious refrain which accompanied the day’s merry-making  – a tune then known as the Furry Dance.

Her re-write was a great success.  Thousands of copies of the sheet music were sold and it has since been recorded in many versions.  It also featured in the film Brassed Off  starring Ewan McGregor (interestingly a French horn player in real life) and Tara Fitzgerald.

Score Preview





You may also like…