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Symphony No. 1 ("Classical"), Op. 113, No. 2 (1917/2020)

For Clarinet Choir

Recording:

MIDI Realization

Duration: 14'

  1. I. Allegro
  2. II. Larghetto
  3. III. Gavotta. Non troppo allegro
  4. IV. Finale. Molto vivace

Instrumentation:

  • Eb Clarinet
  • Bb Clarinet 1 (div. a2)
  • Bb Clarinet 2 (div. a2)
  • Bb Clarinet 3 (div. a2)
  • Alto Clarinet 1
  • Alto Clarinet 2
  • Bass Clarinet 1
  • Bass Clarinet 2
  • Contra-Alto Clarinet
  • Contrabass Clarinet

Program Notes:

For the first year in a whiles, I find myself without a regular clarinet choir to conduct - however, I still have such a backlog of pieces I think will work well for clarinet choir that I expect to be arranging for a long time to come!

I first became acquainted with Prokofiev's Classical Symphony when observing the Hochstein Youth Symphony Orchestra under John Fetter. They performed the third movement, and I was struck by the adventuresome harmonies that were simultaneously ear-catching and utterly natural and right. Listening to the entire piece, Prokofiev's blending of Classical forms and proportions with his own more contemporary sense of harmony was immediately appealing.

Of the symphony, Prokofiev wrote: "When our classically inclined musicians and professors (to my mind faux-classical) hear this symphony, they will be bound to scream in protest at this new example of Prokofiev's insolence, look how he will not let Mozart lie quiet in his grave but must come prodding at him with his grubby hands, contaminating the pure classical pearls with horrible Prokofievish dissonances. But my true friends will see that the style of my symphony is precisely Mozartian classicism and will value it accordingly, while the public will no doubt just be content to hear happy and uncomplicated music which it will, of course, applaud."