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A few words from Paul Harris;
To complete the series, Victoria suggested I might like to write an unaccompanied Sonatina for Bass Clarinet which I did with great enthusiasm! In fact, apart from bass clarinet parts in clarinet quartets, this is the first time I’d written music for bass clarinet as a solo instrument. In studying a number of extant works, I was reminded what a flexible and versatile instrument the bass clarinet is.
Again, the Sonatina is cast in the usual 4 movement structure
The first movement certainly makes use of the bass clarinet’s broad range of pitch, dynamic possibilities and timbres. It contrasts two main ideas, one developing through big leaps and the other through descending intervals, both have the use of triplets in common.
The second movement is a rather cheeky and jazz-inspired. The triplet theme is still present and, again, the broad pitch range of the bass clarinet is exploited.
The third movement is the most serious and introspective, there is a deeply questioning feeling throughout but there is resolution at the end despite the previous tonal ambiguity.
The final movement is a real tour-de-force exploring all the bass clarinet does so well.
I hope players of this instrument will enjoy this addition to the repertoire and I thank Victoria very much for her
commission. Paul Harris, 2023
The world premiere recording by Victoria Samek will be available in February 2024.
Scoring: solo bass clarinet
Standard: Moderate to Advance
Length: 4 minutes