Vier Elemente und Fuge - (2010)
for saxophone quartet
Deutsches Saxophon Ensemble gewidmet
I had a message from a saxophonist Michael Ruf inquiring whether I had interest in composing for the instrument, and this is my response. The Deutsches Saxophon Ensemble ensemble plays a broad repertoire, classically based. This quartet for them is written for soprano, alto, tenor and baritone sax (with the A key for the bottom C2). The at-pitch instrumental ranges are as follow.
The opening is a set of simple recitative-like statements as a prolonged upbeat the measure 4 and the rondo theme's first statement.
A close harmony moment like unto popular arranging for voices lies over the tonic C with lower neighbors decorating.
A set of parallel half-diminished sevenths darken the mood for a moment and draw away from the tonic into a distant tonal region, pending return of the main subject.
Another break from the short rondo theme comes with a quixotic waltz, the baritone's line hinting at a possible 6/8 division of the bar which remains unrealized. The tenor takes up the waltz theme for a moment, and then the rondo theme returns for its traditional cadence for this form.
As answer to the rondo, this jig fugue romps through the tonic major's harmonic scheme, supported by an accompanying voice, before striking out to the dominant and thence to more distant harmonic colors. A short coda ends the work of approximately 6' in length.
Circa 6' 30" -- MP3 Demo
The transposed score and parts are as free PDF downloads, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this score and the parts for this saxophone quartet.