Concerto for Oboe

John Woolrich (1954)

Concerto for Oboe 1996

333.ssax.3 - 4331 - timp - perc(4) - strings
Duration 
26
Solist 
Genre 
Commissioner 
Publisher 

The Oboe Concerto was commissioned by the BBC for the 1996 BBC Proms. The first performance was given by Nicholas Daniel and the BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Matthias Bamert in the Royal Albert Hall, London on 14 August 1996. All concertos are built from a mismatch of forces: the individual against the crowd, solo against tutti. Many composers have intensified this discrepancy by banishing the solo instrument from the orchestra, so that the colour of the solo and the tutti are as different as possible. In this concerto, rather than isolating the oboe, I have filled the orchestra with the mournful noise of its singing: the soloist is surrounded, figuratively in the music and literally on the stage, by the attendant group of three oboes and their more extravert second cousin, the soprano saxophone. But the oppositions are still there - the drama and the poetry of the work flow from the contrast between the fragile keening of the oboe and the brutal power of a large symphony orchestra.

John Woolrich

Performances 
14.8.96, BBC Proms, London: Nicholas Daniel/BBC Symphony Orchestra/Matthias Bamert
3.12.02 St John's Smith Square, London: Nicholas Daniel/Kensington Symphony Orchestra/Russell Keable
19.6.04 Aldeburgh Festival: Nicholas Daniel/City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra/Sakari Oramo
18.3.05 Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow: Nicholas Daniel/BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra/Martyn Brabbins
3
Flute
2nd & 3rd piccolo
3
Oboe
3
Clarinet
2nd bass clarinet, 3rd Eb clarinet
1
Saxophone
soprano sax
3
Bassoon
3rd contrabassoon
4
Horn
3
Trumpet
3
Trombone
1
Tuba
1
Timpani
4
Percussion
metal claves, waterphone, suspended cymbal, 10 or so tin cans, brake drum, 2 tam-tam, triangle, anvil, lions roar, 5 scaffold bars, hammer, bass drum plus pedal, bass drum, 2 scaffold feet, 4 car wheels, Verdi bass drum, hi-hat, 2 spring coils, oxygen cylinder, crotales
(Esc)