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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000596.txt from 2001/05

Subj: Re: [kl] Mahler 1
Date: Thu, 24 May 2001 22:41:14 -0400

Dan Leeson said :

The bass part is an E-flat double (at least) and during the time that the bass switches to E-flat, the two E-flat clarinets are required to play together with the more exposed line handled by the bass/E-flat player. Because I always felt that switching from bass to E-flat was an unnatural act, whenever I played the work, I preferred that the other E-flat player should handle the more exposed role, and we worked that out. The fact is that going from a bass mouthpiece to an E-flat
mouthpiece with no preparation whatsoever for an exposed passage is not something I wanted to do.

Walter Replies:

Dan, Dan, Dan......for shame!

>From you, the guardian of the sacredness of the composers intentions!!!

Mahler was one of the most celebrated conductors of his time. He knew the capabilities of the instriments and the players of his time extremely well. He was one of the most careful and precise orchestrators of any time.

Perhaps the weakness and wobbliness of the bass clarinet embouchure rapidly encountering rhe Eb clarinet mouthpiece produced EXACTLY the effect he wanted in this interesting little passage, which was at one time described as two drunken clarinet players leaving a tavern.

Your actions in this regard are inconsistent with your usual stand on "the exact clarinet as specified by the composer".

As a practical matter, the last time I performed this piece, we did exactly the same thing you did.

*** Sly Grin ***

Walter Grabner

P.S. Some of you might have noticed my lack of contribution to this list in the previous several months. I have not left the list, in fact i have read nearly every post.

Unfortunately, the last several months have been extremely busy and arduous. I prefer not to post unless I have time to compose a well thought out response. Fortunately, demands on my time will decrease in the coming months and i can get back to participating in some of our discussions. Boy, when did I get so formal?????

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