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Klarinet Archive - Posting 001234.txt from 2000/04

From: Bear Woodson <Bear@-----.Com>
Subj: [kl] misunderstandings about composer Bear Woodson
Date: Fri, 28 Apr 2000 22:27:29 -0400

Hello, Clarinet List.

Oops! A few people have E-Mailed me with some very
mistaken ideas. No, I am NOT a clarinet player. I have
never said that I was. I have never been a clarinetist, nor a
woodwind player.

Many years ago, I used to play piano (Mozart and
Beethoven sonatas and concertos, Chopin √Čtudes, etc.), but
I had severe nerve damage to the right hand, and have had
to become left-handed in all handwriting ever since. In the
last 10 years, I've slowly regained most usage of my right
hand, but I still write left-handed only.

I'm getting my doctorate as a composer. I have never
been a clarinetist. I haven't played piano in many years. I
study the fingerings, bowings, mallet percussion techniques,
trombone slide positions, etc., of every instrument, but I
play NONE of them. I do not play piano any more, but
intend to write sonatas and concertos for all orchestral
instruments. Right now I'm orchestrating a Horn Concerto
and a Rhapsody for Harp and Orchestra.

Eventually I will write sonatas for clarinet and piano,
and concertos for clarinet and orchestra, but I'm already
booked to finish orchestrating these 2 other concertos;
then to write a work for Tuba Solo with Woodwind Quintet
and Percussion, and then to write a full symphony, as my
doctoral dissertation.

> Date: Thu, 27 Apr 2000 09:01:14 -0700 (PDT)
> To: klarinet@-----.org
> From: Bilwright@-----.net (William Wright)
> Subject: Re: [kl] Woodson's Composition Style
> Message-ID:
> <21949-3908644A-2170@-----.net>
>
> <><> a symphony for my doctoral dissertation
>
> Curiosity strikes again. How will the professors (who
> hear your dissertation) hear your symphony? Does the
> school orchestra play it? Or do the professors play parts
> of it on the piano for themselves, or do they read the
> sheet music and 'hear' what they read in their minds?

Classically trained composers, opera singers, and con-
ductors are routinely trained to "hear" scores in their heads,
via years of Ear Training. Most instrumental performers
lack that, which is a pity. For really complex scores, they
can always transpose a full score to C Score, and play it
at the piano. I publish all my works in Finale print myself.
I then coil-bind and mail-out scores and parts myself.

Since I've been at the University of Arizona in Tucson,
only some of my works have been played:

"Sonata for 4-Horns"
(3 movements, 14 min., Dec. 1996; Only the
1st movement was performed here.)

"Three Flute Duets" (8 min., 1996, in an abstract
style and very hard to play)

"Three Simple Pieces for Quartet of Young Cellists",
(composed in 1975, Finale printed and
copyrighted in 1997)

"Scenes in an Oriental Garden: a Duo for Viola
and Percussion", (8 pieces, 15 min.,
March 1997; premiered in Oct. 1997.)

"Sonata for Flute and Piano"
(4 movements, 14 min., Sept. 1998; the
3rd movement is the "Flamenco" which can
be used as a separate piece, with castanets)

Six other works were recorded in May and June of
1999, but most have never been played in a live recital
here:

1) "Second Woodwind Quintet" (for Flute, Oboe,
Bb Clarinet, Horn in F, and either Bassoon, or
Bb Bass Clarinet; 5 movements, 15 min., Sept.
1997; we recorded it with the Bass Clarinet
version, and they did a GREAT job of it!)

2) "Canticle for Unaccompanied Tuba"
(9 pieces, 11 min., Sept. 1998)

3) "Three Flute Duets" (8 min., 1996, in an
abstract style and very hard to play)

4) "Sonata for Flute and Piano" (4 movements,
14 min., Sept. 1998; the 3rd movement is the
"Flamenco" which can be used as a separate
piece, with castanets)

5) "Flitter Critters" (7 comical pieces for Flute and
Alto Flute in G, which imitate Birds, Bats
Bees, etc., 10 min., Feb. 1998)

6) "Elegy for Dr. Peter Jona Korn" (This is actually
the 2nd movement of my 4-movement, 21-minute
"Sonata No. 1 for Viola and Piano". It is designed
to be used as a separate piece, accompanied by
string quartet with a string bass, or with piano, as
part of the original sonata. This movement was
completed in September 1998, 5 1/2 minutes; the
whole sonata was completed in May 1999, 21
minutes.)

I doubt that I'll get a grant to have my symphonic works
played here, anytime soon, but many soloists, and ensembles
are looking over several of my works, in many cities across
the US and Europe, all from being on these Instrument Lists
just since March 1999! I'd like it, if the Tucson or Phoenix
Symphonies would play my works, but I don't know how I'll
get the funding, since I'm considered an "unknown" composer.
Oh, well.

Bear Woodson
doctoral student composer at the
University of Arizona
Tucson, Arizona, USA

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