Triple Set (2016)
for flute, clarinet, and piano
Instrumentation: flute, clarinet, and piano
Duration: 11 minutes 30 seconds
World Premiere: Premiered by the Webster Trio (Leone Buyse, Michael Webster, and Robert Moeling) on September 14, 2016 in Houston, Texas as part of the Flute/Clarinet Duos Consortium.
Triple Set was commissioned by the Flute/Clarinet Duos Consortium, an organization of 17 groups which gave the premiere performances of the work. I’ve always been fascinated by the flute and clarinet, and when I was approached by my colleagues at Rice (Leone Buyse and Michael Webster) to write a piece for flute, clarinet and piano (I’m a pianist myself), for the Flute/Clarinet Duos Consortium, I was happy to oblige. Both of my sons also play the clarinet, so many of these sounds were around me at the time.
The piece is in three contrasting movements. The first movement, Driving, marked “With great energy”, is rhythmically propelled forward by the piano’s muted strings and the flute and clarinet playing at first in rhythmic unison, then each taking a turn at solos while the other participates in the accompanimental syncopations. The second movement, Still, is marked “Timeless” and slowly unfolds its melodic and harmonic ideas. The third movement, Relentless, is a kind of 6/8 scherzo, which vigorously and relentlessly propels itself forward to the end, with just two minor interruptions of quasi-cadenza like passages for flute and clarinet duo.
© 2016 Pierre Jalbert, Triple Set
Photo: Julia Jalbert