This is a beautiful piece in 4 movements. We found the first movement
to be the most difficult to play in an interesting and appealing way.
The second movement is a lively fugue in the inimitable Shannon style.
The third movement is a lyrical andante, and the fourth is a rollicking
allegro in the 6/8 style beloved by baroque composers.
Here are the four movements:
The piece is played entirely in swing style, and is a (tetra)hoot to play.
There are three movements. The first, "Aria", alternates between the
parts playing in synchrony and going off in little riffs. The second
movement, "Recitative", is a soulful solo for the soprano. The third
movement is the fugue (there's always a fugue), and although everyone
shares with the theme, they mostly share the fugue theme with the tenor,
which gets the lion's share. One caution for musicians: these themes
are so catchy that you'll find them playing in loops in your head for
This piece was subsequently recorded in a fine recording session, with professionals Vicky Boeckman and Frances Feldon joining Glen and Mark:
This is one of only a very few pieces that Williams composed. It is
very much in the tradition of English baroque music, and as the
title implies, gives the performers a number of chances to make
birdlike trills, chirps and squawks. Lightweight and melodic.
You may notice that we took the short fourth movement at a relaxed,
lyrical pace. The movements are Adagio, Allegro, Grave, Allegro.
Schaffrath (1709 - 1763) composed in a transitional style between
the high baroque and the classical, that is sometimes called "roccoco".
It has three movements: Adagio, Allegro and Vivace. We added
a fourth movement, a musical joke played on the audience,
that we called "Allegro Irlandese".
Louis-Antoine Dornel (ca. 1685 - 1765) was a French composer who lived in Paris. Not being a court composer, he wrote for the aristocracy. Relatively little survives of his compositions, which we found original and enjoyable, in spite of being highly mannered in the style of the period.
The Suite has 7 movements, all with French names as one might expect.
At the same concert, the group Quintessence (with Juliette Faraco, Dan Chernikov and Christopher Flake) performed a version of Peter Warlock's Capriol Suite that was arranged for 5 recorders by Stanley Taylor. This works very well on recorder quintet. We switched instruments between movements, and in playing the six movements of the suite, we all managed to play most of the different recorders (from sopranino to bass).
This is our favorite of the very nice Bach trio sonatas. It has four movements: Adagio, Allegro, Andante, Allegro. Our approach to the work is moderation: not too slow in the slow movements (for example, performances by string players tend to drag, but wind players need to breathe) and not too fast in the fast movements, which have plenty of intrinsic momentum. The last movement has an unusual, cadenza-like section of modulating arpeggios near the end.
Pat Marion approached San Francisco Bay Area composer Nancy Bloomer Deussen with a request to compose something for our quartet, and Nancy wrote the Yellowstone Suite. Although Nancy is a prolific composer, this is the first piece she has written for viola da gamba in an ensemble. It was quite a challenge for us, and we had a lot of fun working it up. It was recorded in June, 2014. Deb Soule made the slide-show, which perfectly captures the feeling of the piece visually.
There are three movements. Daybreak at Hayden Valley, The Yellowstone
River (which reminds some of us of Smetana's Moldau), and Playful Pelicans.
This is from van Eyck's Der Fluyten Lusthof, a large collection from the 1640s of variations on tunes for solo recorder. It was played on a Ganassi alto recorder in g, made by Peter van der Poel. The slide-show of Dutch paintings was composed with the audio by Deb Soule. You can hear hail rattling the church windows at the beginning of the piece!