This site is home to Alea Publishing & Recording, specializing in music for the bass clarinet.
We offer a growing catalog of creative, artistic transcriptions and new works for bass clarinet solo & ensemble.
Dutch composer Hans Tobel (1966-) wrote Trio Bassoso in 2008 for his wife, a bass clarinetist, to perform with two of her young students. The work is an excellent addition to the available repertoire of easily-accessible ensemble pieces; it could be used as an effective challenge for the young student, or a smooth addition to a program for more experienced high school or college players.
The brief work consists of three movements, all with dance-like rhythms: Scherzando in 5/8; Andante serioso in 6/8; Vivo in 9/8. While all players are required to have an extended-range instrument, the demands on range are otherwise quite limited.
All parts require extended-range instruments. Score: 6 pages, spiral bound; Parts: 2 pages each, single sheet.
Read the Review:
This is not only a review of a new piece but also a publisher: Trio Bassoso by the Dutch flutist Hans Tobel for three bass clarinets published by the American publisher Alea (Tacoma, Washington) which is run by Kimberly Davenport, pianist and her father, Michael Davenport, bass clarinet.
And it is a publisher that has been close to my heart for several years. Kimberly and Michael have built up an excellent library with appropriate transcriptions for bass clarinet of classical pieces and also a number of titles originally written for bass clarinet, for example Trio Bassoso, which Hans Tobel composed for his wife (who teaches clarinet), and two of her students.
The good thing about Alea, I think, is that rather than targeting eccentric 'highbrow' new compositions for (very) advanced bassists, they publish truly playable music at different levels. I have gradually acquired a nice collection of their publications, ranging from baroque duets, pieces by Haydn, a Contest Album with performance pieces by Lully, Tartini, Vivaldi and Rachmaninov, the famous Elegie by Gabriel Faure, and especially - and that appeals to me as a Bachophile - some quite good arrangements of pieces by Bach: three cello sonatas, the Concerto in C minor by his son JC Bach and - of course - the acclaimed cello suites. These had already been issued for clarinet, most notably by Alphonse Leduc, but with many inappropriate octave shifts (because the range of the ordinary clarinet) and deletions (associated with the double stops of the cello). Alea's publication remains closest to the original cello and is therefore for me one of the treasures of Alea's collection.
Purchasing is easy. The scores are, I think, created in Finale and then encased in a simple spiral ring band. The layout is very good, including blank pages to facilitate page turns. And I have yet to find a typo. Best of all, the Alea website [www.bassclarinet.org] works perfectly and orders usually arrive within one week.
This small but brave (and beautiful) label now also includes the Trio Bassoso Opus 13 by the Dutchman Hans Tobel (1966-). Trio Bassoso is traditional in structure in terms of notation, range, melodic and tonal range (mostly in the low register), but is challenging because the choice of time signatures: 5/8, 8/8, 9/8.
And that is an interesting feature of this work: accessible for students to absorb, but also featuring distinct new musical features. Moreover, Trio Bassoso is truly composed for three bass clarinets and not suitable for three regular clarinets because, particularly in the lower voice, but also in the other voices, much use is made of the extended range capability of the bass clarinet.
- Maarten Mestrom, de Klarinet, May/June 2011; Vol.13, No.74
Duo Alea began performing music for bass clarinet and piano in 1996. As both performers searching for new repertoire and teachers working with students eager to develop as performers, it quickly became clear that there was a need for more repertoire featuring the bass clarinet. Filling this need became the mission of Alea Publishing & Recording.
Since our first publication in 1997, the Bach Suites, the Alea catalog now includes over 250 titles. As performing musicians ourselves, we pride ourselves on the accuracy and quality of our sheet music, as well as our ability to ship directly to customers around the world.
We are proud of the diversity of our catalog in terms of the inclusion of works by composers and arrangers from around the world. We are interested in continuing to expand this diversity, representing musical ideas from around the world.
In June 2020, we announced the creation of the Dolphy Prize for new works for bass clarinet by Black composers.
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