Transcribed by Rebecca Mindock
Nineteenth-Century Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893) composed his String Quartet No. 1, op. 11 in February of 1871. Its hauntingly lovely slow movement, the “Andante Cantabile,” is often performed alone both in its original form and for full string orchestra. This transcription of the movement for five clarinets attempts to maintain the homogeneity of tone color inherent in the string quartet while also expanding the parts out from four to five to allow for full harmonic coverage of the double-stops found in the original score. This version, originally conceived for student performance, allows for a diversity of ability levels within the ensemble, with several parts that incorporate more difficulty of range and musicality than others.
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