Arranged by Gene Kavadlo
Adapted for Woodwind Quintet by Adam Lesnick
Published by International Opus
Includes score and parts
This set of Klezmer Dances include: Freylekh, Khostol, Kolomeyke, Kamariska.
Performance Notes for Klezmer Dances
by Gene Kavadlo
Klezmer music has frequently been associated with jazz and has even been dubbed by some people as “Jewish jazz”. In actuality, the sort of chord based improvisation performed by jazz musicians is non-existent in traditional Klezmer music. Rather, the musician is expected to ornament a prescribed melody in a tasteful, artistic manner. In that sense, Klezmer music is more closely related to Baroque music than to jazz, although the ornamentation of a Klezmer melody is quite different from that of a Bach Chaconne.
The clarinet has inherited the mantle of number one Klezmer instrument; thus the other instruments in the Klezmer Dances occupy a supporting role. Clarinets can do all sorts of tricks that work well in Klezmer music; glissandi up or down, trills, appogiaturas, bending notes. The clarinetist is urged to temporarily forget classical training and focus on a looser embouchure, flexible throat, and very flexible reed. Listening to recordings of some of the old masters, such as Dave Tarras and Naftule Brandwein, will help the clarinetist assimilate the language and style of Klezmer music…
This woodwind quintet version, adapted by Gene Kavadlo and Adam Lesnick from the Klezmer ensemble arrangements, is true to the Klezmer tradition of using whichever instruments are available to make the music (in this case, a woodwind quintet), and willl be great fun for performers and audience alike.