Danse of the Wooden Toys

Danse of the Wooden Toys for clarinet and percussion
Publisher: Music by Josh Gottry (2017)
Composed: 2016
Duration: 3′
Difficulty: Medium
view score excerpt
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Danse of the Wooden Toys was written as part of the Duo Rodina Songbook project, but also composed specifically with two high school students in mind … one a private percussion student of mine and the other, my clarinetist daughter.  The overall form of the piece is a rondo – A B A C A – with each of the individual sections typically containing two or more phrases.  The danse (or dance) begins immediately with a solo statement by the clarinet, followed by a complementary response in the percussion. These two voices then join together to present the A theme as a duo, completing the initial refrain.  The first episode begins in measure 25 with a lyrical line in the clarinet which is then repeated an octave lower.  This B section is then extended with an embellished (or dance-like) version of this lyrical episode, allowing the clarinetist to stretch her fingers a bit.  After a two-phrase reprise of the refrain and a brief transitional percussion interlude, the second episode begins in measure 79 and departs temporarily from the 7/8 time signature.  This C section contains the most interplay between the two voices, with only occasional rhythmic unison statements.  The final refrain is only one phrase in length, essentially functioning as a brief coda to the duet.  Danse of the Wooden Toys was premiered in the summer of 2016 by Robert & Emily.