The title of this quintet—For Love—has multiple meanings. The first meaning is quite literal—I dedicated the work to my dear friend and colleague Ed Love, a great artist, a brilliant clarinetist, and an exceptional human being. In his exemplification of kindness, generosity, and compassion, Ed truly lives up to every quality implied by his last name. The title also relates to the many experiences of love—including beauty, grace, yearning, pain, deep tenderness, peace, joy, awe, and gratitude.
The work is in three movements. The first movement is a flowing journey through a quasi-arch form, with a transformation of thematic materials as they are restated. Clarinet and strings are often in a dialogue, with the full range of the clarinet’s color and expressive capabilities featured in cadenzas and juxtaposed with rather intense, lyrical, and rich string melodies. The middle portion of the movement features an elegantly expressive melody with changing beat patterns and a texture which grows richer and more effusive as it progresses. The second movement could be described as a graceful dance in ABA form. The playful A theme is predominantly in F major and moves in a swinging 5/8 meter, while the slower and more tender B theme is in the darker key of Db major and alternates between 3/4 and 6/8. Movement three begins with a tender and intense introduction, recalling the atmosphere of the first movement, and then barrels ahead into a lively five-part rondo which juxtaposes a playful tune in Bb major with an unstable, agitated, acrobatic, and wailing theme in 7/8 meter. The tension between the themes finds resolution in an enthusiastic and optimistic coda.
For Love—Quintet for clarinet and string quartet
PDF file; includes score and all parts
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