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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000512.txt from 2004/08

From: "Mark H. Weinstein" <>
Subj: Re: [kl] A bass clarinet
Date: Tue, 17 Aug 2004 18:22:29 -0400

My source is someone who was at the Selmer factory just recently, spoke
with the Selmer family, and they are not set up to make the instrument.
They have one but are not willing to sell it. Thanks for your help. I
will contact steve. Mark

dnleeson wrote:
> If you are directing your note to me, I sold the instrument to
> the b.c. player of the Toronto S.O. about 10 years ago. And
> about two years ago he sold it to someone in England.
> But I would not accept just anyone's view that Selmer will no
> longer make a b.c. in A. I don't know where you live, but I
> would not talk to anyone except the American distributor of
> Selmer, and that would be only for the purpose of getting the
> email of the factory and sales office in Paris.
> They have made them. They have the ability to make another one
> at the drop of a hat. Their natural inertia is to say, "We don't
> want to." So your next step is to threaten their children with
> one hand whilst holding a lot money in the other.
> I remember asking Selmer to make a basset clarinet in B-flat for
> me, and some flunky in a suit told me, "But there is no
> literature for such an instrument." Since that time he has
> spoken with a lisp. I didn't buy one from them because I figured
> that anyone who had such a schmuck working for them did not
> deserve my business.
> Your next step, if you don't like threatening people, is to
> contact Steve Fox in Toronto. Ask him if he will make one.
> After all anyone who will make a taragato and a basset clarinet
> in G will do anything.
> The most recent email I have for Steve is:
> but he is one of the sponsors of
> Klarinet and is on the list of makers.
> Mark, you have got to stop taking no for an answer.
> Dan Leeson
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Mark H. Weinstein []
> Sent: Tuesday, August 17, 2004 2:52 PM
> To:
> Subject: Re: [kl] A bass clarinet
> Selmer no longer makes an A Bass clarinet, not even on special
> order, so
> it now bewcomes impossible to purchase one new. So are you
> willing to
> part with yours? Mark
> Robert Howe wrote:
> >
> > > Mahler and Schoenberg both wrote for the A Bass on a regular
> basis. Both
> > > were experienced conductors, especially Mahler. Hence there
> is
> > > not the shadow of a doubt that at least high profile
> orchestras in Austria
> > > kept and used A-bassclarinets.
> >
> > What's to debate? I have an A bass clarinet, and so does the
> Philly
> > Orchestra, and I have seen others for sale. They were a
> standard part of
> > German orchestral clarinet playing from Wagner to Schoenberg.
> I don't
> > understand why this is an issue, don't people read Forsythe and
> Piston and
> > other textbooks of orchestration? I just heard Cleveland do
> the Mahler 7th,
> > and the part is written about 50/50 between A and Bb basses.
> Was Mahler
> > too stupid to tell that the player had only one clarinet?
> >
> > My A bass is a Selmer and the sound is so fine, SOOOOO fine,
> that it has
> > been borrowed by other players, including a local professional,
> for its tone
> > quality alone--some other players have read Bb parts on it a
> half step
> > higher, in order to get the timbre of this fine bass clarinet.
> No, I am NOT
> > making this up.
> >
> > The height of A bass clarinet stupidity is found in Gunther
> Schuller's
> > Sonata for soprano and bass clarinets, which starts with both
> players on Bb
> > instruments but in the third movement calls for, yes you've
> guessed it, both
> > players to change to A... No, I am not making THIS up either.
> >
> > Please, don't let anyone carry this discussion into C and D
> clarinets...
> >
> > And by the way, Dan Leeson, Ginny Benade says "Hi".
> >
> > Ciao
> >
> > Robert Howe
> >
> > ---------------------------------------------------------------
> ------
> > Klarinet is a service of Woodwind.Org, Inc.
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
> ----
> Klarinet is a service of Woodwind.Org, Inc.
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