Magazine article Musical Opinion

A New Clarinet Concerto

Magazine article Musical Opinion

A New Clarinet Concerto

Article excerpt

The bar of the South Norwood Conservative Club is an unlikely venue for the world premiere of a new clarinet concerto, but on May 4 the local Conservatives, bemused by being offered free beer, were either compensated or inflicted with an evening of music. Only one chap walked out of the concerto, at bar 18; obviously he thought he was in the wrong place. First, we had the first movement of Ravel's string quartet, a horn trio by Amon, a Beethoven clarinet trio (No 4 in B flat), and three violin duets by Shostakovitch. All these were warm-ups for Danny Gillingwater's new Clarinet Concerto, written for Shaun Thompson and an orchestra of a dozen wind, brass and strings, conducted by the composer.

Danny was mentored (as I was) by the late Felix Aprahamian, deputy music critic of the Sunday Times from 1948 to 1989, who described Danny as the complete renaissance man. In response, Danny named his son after Felix. …

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