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Schwarzer Tänzer

Nigel Wood


Sheet Music

PDF E-Edition:





Bb or Eb sax & Piano




From the composer: This was written for Christopher Boatwright, a principal male dancer with the Stuttgart Ballet – one of the first black dancers to achieve recognition at this level in Germany. Much to his frustration, media coverage of his performances focused on his colour rather than his talent. When he wanted a piece of music that could be choreographed, I avoided ethnic music clichés (despite the title, which means “black dancer”) and went for a Germanic fusion of Weil and oompah band.
This sax and piano version is the original one. While my sax quintet “Saxtet” was busking in Germany I re-arranged it for saxophone quintet which was eventually recorded on the “Safer Sax” album. Its popularity led to its regular inclusion in concert programmes and its performance at the World Saxophone Congress in Italy in 1992.
Although Schwarzer Tänzer has been musically performed many times, the dancer’s untimely death means that it remains undanced.

The E-Edition PDF bundle includes Bb and Eb saxophone parts and piano accompaniment. MP3 play-along tracks are available separately, containing five tracks at varying tempi, starting slowly, building gradually to the required tempo.

“Schwarzer Tänzer” is included in the following exam syllabi:

TCL Saxophone – Grade 8 (Eb & Bb) – valid from November 2022

Please check the latest exam syllabi for updates and amendments.

“Schwarzer Tänzer” is also available in hard-copy from June Emerson Wind Music.


here are strong influences of Weil throughout and there are challenges for both the pianist and the saxophonist. Strong rhythms prevail and the melody has character. It is good to see this featuring on the new ABRSM grade 8 saxophone list. I’m sure that candidates will enjoy the challenge and style.
Carol Taylor, Clarinet and Saxophone Magazine, Winter 2001

tom.saxtet – January 14, 2023

It is a lively piece, full of rhythmic insistence based on a motif played in the piano introduction which recurs throughout the work. A piano score is supplied along with versions for both E flat and B flat saxophones and would be suitable for performers of a moderately high standard.
Sheet Music Magazine, Summer 2002

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