Recorder Concerto

for recorder and ensemble

Brian Inglis

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for recorder and ensemble

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Composer Brian Inglis



Year of Composition


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ca. 13'

Student Difficulty

Categories (all composers) , , , , , ,
Catalogue ID ce-bi1rc1


This piece aims to explore the expressive, virtuosic and sonic potential of the recorder as a concertante instrument. Both descant and treble are used, and at one point (bb 141-144) a special effect is created by playing two descant recorders simultaneously – an evocation of the double flute or aulos of folk and antique tradition. Formally the concerto combines a traditional Classical/Romantic three-movement concerto structure into one movement, which also relates to the ritornello form of the Baroque concerto: an introductory instrumental exposition is followed by a solo exposition of similar material, then various episodes of dialogue and alternation between recorder and orchestra. Several indeterminate techniques are used, giving individual instrumentalists rhythmic freedom – for instance at figure F and in the first part of the central ‘slow movement’ (bb 145-195). The linked ‘finale’ contains two cadenzas for the soloist – one each for treble and descant instruments – separated by a recapitulation of previous material (also a feature of the descant cadenza).

… een bijzonder stuk…. Voor zeer vergevorderde of professionele spelers een uitdaging om hier samen met een pianist eens de tanden in te zetten! [… a remarkable piece…. For very advanced or professional players this is a challenge and together with a pianist something to get their teeth into!’] (Bernadette Pollen, blokfluitist, September 2017)


Excerpt from live recording: first part, figures H to M (Owen Morse-Brown + Rainbow International Ensemble/Roger Heaton, Bath Spa University, 1999)

Excerpt from live recording: third part, figures Q to S (Owen Morse-Brown + Rainbow International Ensemble/Roger Heaton, Bath Spa University, 1999)