Serenata Concertante

for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, Alto Saxophone and Wind Ensemble

Samuel Adler

Performing Ensemble: Wind Ensemble
Duration: 24:00
Publisher: Theodore Presser Company
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

The "Serenata Concertante" was written in the spring of 1997, commissioned by thirteen wind-ensembles and specified to be for solo flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone and wind-ensemble. With such a large solo group, I felt that the best way to handle the work was to use the baroque concerto grosso as a model. In such a concerto there are two definite groups: concertino comprising of the solo instruments, and "ripieno" the larger group, in this instance the wind-ensemble.

The work is in four movements: 1. Slowly; 2. Fast and agitated; 2. Slowly and lyrically; 4. Fast and with abandon. The first and third movements, and the second and fourth have similar energies. In all the movements, I have tried to pit either solo instruments or groups of solo instruments against the ensemble to glean as many different combinations as possible from this very colorful ensemble.

The first movement opens with the woodwinds and percussion instruments establishing a very steady eighth note rhythm, a background for the opening saxophone solo which introduces the rest of the solo group, and continues to lead them through this rather short movement. All the musical material is introduced by this first saxophone solo, and then elaborated upon throughout the rest of the movement.

The second movement is a fast and furious dialogue between the entire ensemble and the solo group. The energy never stops and the piece is to leave both performers and audience breathless, but hopefully not gasping for breath.

The third movement is a calm relief from the tremendous energy of the previous fast movement. After an opening chorale-like phrase the oboe intones a chant which forms the basis for all the melodic development. The tune in variation form recurs four times, and is usually followed by the "chorale" feeling established at the very beginning.
The final movement like the second one is extremely energetic, however some of the "frantic" sections are relieved by lyrical moments which give the piece the form of a rondo, meaning the contrasts between the wild energy is offset with moments of less constant movement. The work ends with happy spirits prevailing and much interplay between the soloists and the entire group.

Scores & Parts

Serenata Concertante - Full Score - Study

Additional Information

Commission Commissioned by thirteen wind ensembles.
Composition Date 1997
Orchestration Fl., Ob., Cl., Bsn., A.Sax. Soli; 3(Picc.) 2 3(BbCl.) 2, A.Sax., Ten.Sax. - 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3 Perc.
Premiere November 1997


I. Slowly
II. Fast and Agitated
III. Slowly and Lyrically
IV. Fast and With Abandon

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