Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Unusual concertos [51]: Soprano saxophone

Before the purge of end 2008, one of the most popular topics of this blog was "Unusual concertos", classical concertos for all kinds of instruments and orchestra. I have decided to revive this, aiming for less familiar composers in general. In its original incarnation, I came to 40 different concertante instruments - realizing 50+ this time.

The fifty-first concerto deals with the Soprano saxophone (image source). We have encountered concertos for two other members of the saxophone family before (alto and baritone), now it is the turn for the highest-pitched instrument of the group. Its most famous use in classical music is probably Ravel's Bolero. There are a few concertos for it, though hardly any by a composer who is at least a bit known. I have selected my favourite of them, composed by Takashi Yoshimatsu. It is played by Nobuya Sugawa and the BBC Philharmonic under Yutaka Sado, available on a Chandos CD.

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