Music by

PROGRAM NOTES by the composer

It Takes Four to Tango

IT TAKES FOUR TO TANGO was composed in September 1990 for the quartet Clarinessence, in which I played bass clarinet. The title is simply a twist on the old saying.

Perhaps because the texture is straightforward melody and accompaniment, with catchy rhythm and harmony, I frequently get asked to make transcriptions. Here's what's available so far, all through Presser:

(1) 3 Bb Clarinets and Bass Clarinet: The original version, now recorded by the Interclarinet ensemble -- players from the top orchestras in Germany, Austria, and Hungary.

(2) SATB Saxophone Quartet: Requested by several groups, now recorded by the Tokyo-based Harmo Saxophone Quartet, and the Miles Osland Quartet which added jazz flavoring. and more recently by the Morse Code Saxophone Quartet.  Also performed by Prism and many other quartets.

(3) String Quartet: originally for the Haddonfield Symphony's in-school outreach, now in lots of gig books.

(4) String Quintet (quartet plus bass): also great for in-school and gigs

(5) String Orchestra: now available for high school and community orchestras, a regular publication from Presser.

(6) 3 Bassoons & Contrabassoon: transcribed for Christopher Weait and the Ohio State University Bassoon Ensemble.

(7) Violin (or Flute) & Guitar: premiered by Mimi Stillman and Allen Krantz in Philadelphia.

(8) Flute & Strings: premiered by flutist Mimi Stillman with members of the Philadelphia Orchestra

(9) Bb Clarinet & Bass Clarinet: performed at international clarinet conventions by John Bruce Yeh and Teresa Reilly, as part of the clarinets/mimes ensemble Inventions. The bass clarinet covers the whole accompaniment usually taken by 3 instruments

(10) Violin & Bass Clarinet: not premiered yet.

(11) 4 Contrabassoons: premiered at the 2003 IDRS convention by a team of leading orchestras' contrabassoonists.

(12) Fl., Clar., Bn., Tpt., Tbn., Perc., Vn., Vla., Vc., Cb.: for conductor Benjamin Loeb's showcase of 25 1-minute samplings of classical-music repertoire for the Haddonfield Symphony's educational outreach program.

(13) 2 C Flutes, Alto Flute (or 3 C Flutes), and Bass Flute:
for Flûtes de Salon who premiered it in San Diego in July 2011.

(14) Flute, Clarinet, Horn, Bassoon:
for the WindSong Consort, Temecula, CA

(15) Contrabass Flute and Contrabassoon:
for Keyed Kontraptions, San Francisco, CA

(16) Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet, and Bassoon:
for members of the Johnston (PA) Symphony


last updated December 28, 2020