Bass Trombone (or Bass Clarinet) Concerto

Bass Trombone, String Orchestra
Completed: 11/6/2009; Premiered: 11/16/2009
Cimarron Music Press


This concerto, composed for the music teacher and friend William T. Robinson, is scored for bass trombone or bass clarinet and string orchestra, with an optional piano reduction. The three-movement work is approximately nine minutes long, each movement leading directly to the next.

The first movement opens with a slow introduction based on quartal harmony. The main portion of the movement is an allegro that explores changing meters, with an ostinato based on three measures of 7/8 time followed by one measure of 6/8 time. Toward the end of the movement, this ostinato is compressed as the meters become smaller and smaller.

The second movement is slow, with a mournful character. The modal harmony is centered around D minor alternating with Eb minor. Following a brief interlude, a cadenza for the soloist brings a return to the opening theme.

The third movement is in an Afro-Caribbean style, with the violins substituting for the typical piano montuno in the main theme. Following this, the soloist adopts the montuno pattern while the violins play a soaring melody. This is followed by a call-and-response between the strings, serving as a chorus, and the soloist, which leads back to the original theme. The movement concludes with an extended cadenza for the soloist.


Recorded at the “Brücken” – Festival für Neue Musik in Rostock, Germany, on November 25, 2011.

  • Hidehisa Edane, bass trombone
  • Katja Jahn (Wolf) & Gesine Müller, violins
  • Angelika Engel, viola
  • Norbert Wölz, cello
  • Frank Thoenes, bass

Movement I

Movement II

Movement III


Recorded at University of Montevallo on November 16, 2009.

  • Don Bowyer, bass trombone
  • Kathryn Fouse, piano

Movement I

Movement II

Movement III