“Clarinet Chanson” features the clarinet's chalumeau register, the lowest octave of the clarinet family instruments. A chanson is a 14th- to 16th-century French song for voices with instrumental accompaniment. In “Clarinet Chanson,” the band instruments take the role of the chanson's voices.
This Grade 2 piece begins with the clarinets playing a cantabile melody in the chalumeau register. The piece includes a middle section with the low brasses and low woodwinds sharing the melody while other instruments play a contrasting staccato accompaniment. The piece then enters a transition, and “Clarinet Chanson” ends with a restatement of the clarinet theme.
“Clarinet Chanson” provides ample opportunities to teach lessons in maintaining a steady tempo, blending, intonation, phrasing, and observing dynamics. It also provides an opportunity to teach the clarinet players how to get a rich, full sound in the chalumeau register.
“Clarinet Chanson” is a quiet, change-of-pace piece that lets your band and all of its players shine. Program this piece in any venue. It is sure to be well-received both by players and audiences.