Last month, the Classics a Day team came up with a theme to reflect the reality of social distancing. The challenge was to share solo works for unusual instruments — the kind of instruments best played in social isolation. 

For June, the team is again going with the times. Social bubbles are small groups of people (usually family members) who live together and therefore don’t need to maintain distance from each other. So the challenge is to share examples of classical bubbles. That is, duos for unusual instruments best not shared in public. 

Below are my selections for the third week of #ClassicalBubble

06/15/20 PDQ Bach (1807-1642?) – Duet for Basson and Tuba

Writing engaging, complex music for two low bass instruments can be a real challenge. One that PDQ completely failed at.

 

06/16/20 Michael Praetorius (1571-1621) – Bransle de la Torche for two crumhorns

The crumhorn was a double-reed instrument popular in the Renaissance. The instrument had a limited range of about a ninth and was often used to double choral lines.

 

06/17/20 John Cage (1912-1992) – 3 Dances for 2 prepared pianos

This 1945 work was commissioned by piano duo Robert Fizdale and Arthur Gold. In addition to their ground-breaking concerts, they also hosted a TV cooking show. They dedicated their cookbook to George Balanchine.

 

 

06/18/20 Dave Anderson (1962 – ) Seven Double Bass Duets

Anderson is the principal bass for the Louisiana Philharmonic. As a composer, he’s concerned with expanding the repertoire for his instrument.