Technicolor Pachyderms

Technicolor Pachyderms was written in 2004 by Brian Beck (see below) on a commission from David Brandon, former Director of Bands at Byrd Middle School in Duncansville, TX, for the Symphonic Band from Byrd Middle School to perform at the Texas Honor Band Festival in 2004.

From the composer:

“Technicolor Pachyderms, a concert march in circus march style, was inspired by the 1941 Disney animated feature film Dumbo, which featured music by Frank Churchill and Oliver Wallace. The story of an elephant with big ears, said to have been discovered in a cereal box that arrived at the Disney story department in 1939, opened to audiences troubled by the war raging in Europe. The triumphant story of an underdog, a little elephant that was different from the others, provided much needed release.

The title of this march, Technicolor Pachyderms, comes from an inspired sequence in the film, Pink Elephants on Parade, depicting the consequences of falling into a barrel of pickle juice and the hallucinogenic effect it has on a baby elephant. Ned Washington’s lyric includes this:

I can stand the sight of worms, And look at microscopic germs.
​But Technicolor Pachyderms Is really too much for me.

At the time he wrote this march, composer Brian Beck (b. 1976) was Director of Bands at Byrd Middle School. He holds a bachelor's degree in music education from Texas A&M University-Commerce and a master's degree in music education from the University of Houston.

He served for many years at the Duncanville Independent School District as a band director at Byrd Middle School and beginning band instructor at Brandenburg Intermediate School.

Mr. Beck is very active in composing and arranging for both instrumental and vocal ensembles, many featured in honor band concerts, state marching contests, compact disc recordings, and choral concerts.

Mr. Beck is a member of the Association of Songwriters, Composers, Arrangers, and Publishers (ASCAP). Other affiliations include Texas Music Educators Association, where he serves as the Region 20 Middle School Band Chairman, and Texas Band Masters Association.