News & Views Thursday, June 21, 2018

Repertoire Series: Clarinet Tuesday, August 07, 2012

There are literally hundreds of pieces written and published for flute that could be considered standard repertoire, but in order to keep this article at a reasonable length, we will begin by featuring only a few pieces.

As young Clarinet students mature in their abilities to handle more and more difficult music, many may have played through standard pieces such as Brahms “Sonata # 2 in E-flat Major“, Vanhal “Sonata in B-flat major,” Schumann “Phantasiestucke,” and of course Debussy “Premier Rhapsodie.” All of these pieces have a substantial place on the list of “standard repertoire,” but there are other pieces that bring a certain difficulty level found in more modern composition: Bernstein “Sonata for Clarinet and Piano,” Paul JeanJean “Arabesques,” Andre Messager “Solo de Concours,” Alec Wilder “Sonata,” and Rossini “Introduction, Theme and Variations.”

Mastering standard repertoire pieces helps young students to build knowledge of the literature itself. Each piece aids students in developing style, expression, phrasing, tone and technique as they study and gain more abilities on their instrument.  Other pieces such as Saint-Saens “Sonata opus 167,” Poulenc “Sonata for Clarinet,” and Hindemith’s “Sonata in B-flat” add to a student’s ability to perform with a sense of period-appropriate style.

As high school students prepare for college auditions and continue on as music majors, they will likely have a chance to prepare many of these pieces. Encouraging your students to become familiar with these standards as soon as they are able will give them a “head-start” in their musical career!

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