Sputnik was the first man-made satellite. Launched by the Soviet Union in 1957, it circled the earth for three months before reentry and burning up in earth's atmosphere. It was a golden sphere no bigger than a small beach ball, equipped with a radio transmitter.
It flit. It fluttered. It spit. It sputtered, but got the job done. The little satellite that could, started the space race that landed a man on the moon only 12 years later. I wonder why it was designed as a sphere. Perhaps they thought it would bounce off the atmosphere and catapult into space.
This piece is marked marcia giocoso, humorous march. Sputnik is featured as a little tin soldier. Originally, I wanted it to be in 11/8 time, but figured that the fast tempo would be conducted in four. It would be difficult to conduct three and two thirds beat, so it is in 12/8 time. Some ideas for the piece come from Holst's Mercury. Please comment.