A standard three
movement concerto for Solo Clarinet and
I. A Bosnian Rhapsody
II. Funeral for a Rock Star
III. Serbian Hoedown (The bombs fly but the band
Total duration of the work is about 20 minutes.
Bearing the title "Collateral Damage," the
Concerto for Clarinet and Orchestra was composed
for clarinetist and former colleague Håkan
Rosengren. It was completed over a six
week period during the months of February and
March of 2000 and was premiered by Peter Wright
(Principal Clarinetist) and the Jacksonville
Symphony Orchestra (Fabio Machetti, Conductor)
on March 3 & 4, 2005 at the Times-Union
Performing Arts Hall in Jacksonville, Florida.
The work was also performed by Frank Cohen
and the Cleveland Orchestra in July, 2005 at
Blossom Music Pavillion.
The 20 minute work is somewhat eclectic and post
modern in style and follows the traditional
three movement form. The faster outer
movements are a musical blend of both
contemporary classical and Eastern European folk
idioms. By contrast, the slower middle
movement incorporates musical elements that
characterize some of the popular music of the
late 20th century. Inspired largely
by the tragic events which surrounded the
break-up of the former Yugoslavia during the
1990's, the work is dedicated to the civilian
victims of all modern wars.
The opening movement is titled "A Bosnian
Rhapsody" and is the longest and structurally
the most complex of the three movements.
It is built on two contrasting themes, one
faster and the other much slower, each set in
tonalities that are a semi-tone apart.
These original themes incorporate harmonic and
melodic idioms commonly found in the music of
the balkans and they give the opening movement
its distinctive ethnic flavor.
Following a powerful climax each of these themes
is briefly reprised. This gives way to a
more introspective and subdued but expressive
cadenza which ends the first movement.
The second movement features the clarinet
spinning out a continuously evolving and
expanding melody over a series of recurring but
shifting harmonic patterns. The title
"Funeral for a Rock Star" is a concise
description of the imagery and emotion that the
music seeks to convey. The
seemingly improvisatory and unrestrained
clarinet solo evokes the image of a soul freely
born aloft, while the heavy, plodding
undercurrent of low brass and strings reveals a
procession of loved ones bearing the weight of a
casket and a profound grief whose consolation
lies somewhere between memory and hope.
The rousing and spirited finale "Serbian Hoedown"
(The bombs fly but the band plays on) takes its
inspiration from those men and women who would
congregate on the bridges during the bombing raids
in Serbia in the spring of 1999. They often
passed their time with defiant speeches and
traditional folk singing and dancing in the hope
that the massive structure - which they depended
on for their general livelihood and security -
would not be targeted and destroyed.
Here the clarinet, performing melodic material
steeped in Serbian folk-dance idioms, seems to
lead the orchestra through a series of climaxes
and mishaps (even reviving the ensemble at one
point) as melodic materials first presented by the
solo clarinet are taken up by the accompanying
Other Resanovic works featuring Clarinet: