Thursday, December 20, 2012

All The Music A Clarinetist Will Ever Need.

I've written a new set of pieces for solo clarinet, 100,000,000,000,000 of them, to be exact. It's an homage to Raymond Queneau and his Cent mille milliards de poèmes, with which my set of character pieces shares the same combinatorial flip-book structure, although Queneau's poems are French sonnets (abab abab cce dde in alexandrines) and mine are English sonnets (abab cdcd efef gg in a pentameter.)  The provisional score (provisional meaning I reserve the right to make changes) is available online and it's free to download, here.  The music is diverse — from ambiguously modal to not-quite-tonal to the ornithologically a-tonal to none-of-the-above — yet should have enough connecting features to render a useful percentage of the combinations sensibly unified, another useful percentage with satisfyingly broken continuities and the remaining pieces everywhere in-between.  While these pieces are intended for concert performance, either en-bloc or scattered through a program, played by any size or combination of clarinets, there is also a degree of progressive increases in technical challenges through the collection, so they may be useful for teaching as well.  A complete performance of 100,000,000,000,000 Pieces for Clarinet would take, non-stop at the given tempo with a few seconds in-between pieces, more than 285 million years, and as such now constitutes the vast bulk of the solo clarinet repertoire, which is an audacious little factoid.  I don't expect to hear all of them, but would enjoy hearing from any player who plays some selection of them!  Thanks to Taylan Susam for asking for the pieces and to Danyel Franque for advice on matters clarinetic.

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