What to Do with New Instruments? Part 7 – The Tenor Bassoon

May 10, 2015

Bandestration

For the majority of this series, the works I’ve looked at have been from the early part of the 1900s and have been major works by major composers.  I can’t do that this time.  No major works by major composers have ever been written that include a Tenor Bassoon in their orchestration.  I’ve search high and low for years, but none exist.  There’s some speculation that Rossini might have intended it in the overture to William Tell, but this is highly doubtful.  The premier of that work was in Paris in 1829.  The English Horn was well known at the time and used to great effect just one year later by Berlioz in Symphonie Fantastique.  However, the Tenor Bassoon in G was known at the time and used in some French opera houses as a substitute for the English Horn.  The confusion comes from what is called “Old…

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