Clarinet Notes

Odds and ends of clarinet tech and training

Repertoire Ideas Series: FAQ


Here’s a 4-part series covering repertoire ideas for clarinetists of different levels. Each piece has a link/button for easy access to further information such as YouTube performances and sheet music sources. Links to the four parts:
FAQ AdvancedIntermediateEmerging

What are these lists for?

  1. To find some new music to play. As a member of Clarinet Transformation Community, I need to prepare new material for a monthly masterclass. This list gives me a source to pull ideas from.
  2. To assess my development — how much of the Advanced material is within my reach?

What are emerging, intermediate, and advanced clarinetists?

Emerging: total beginners up to about 2 years of experience. In ABRSM/RCM grading terms, that’s about grade 3.

Intermediate: up to about 5 years experience; typical high-school Allstate band; ABRSM 4-6; RCM 4-7.

Advanced: university performance major and beyond.

How were the pieces graded?

Very subjectively! Music I could play comfortably after 1 year back from a 50-year layoff was “Intermediate”. Anything harder was “Advanced”. Most of what’s listed as intermediate or advanced in the initial version is stuff I have played or studied a bit. Or put on my wish list — things I wish I could play.

The “Emerging” group, on the other hand, is mostly material I haven’t seen, so I graded that based on catalog descriptions. The exception is Lester’s 60 Rambles — I have played and recorded every one of those, and I love them!

Where can I find the sheet music? Is it free?

Clicking the Google Info link often shows you options for sheet music. If you see a list of vendors like Groth Music, Ficks, and Sheet Music Plus, the piece is most likely still under copyright. Sites like IMSLP offer downloads of out-of-copyright works.

What are the categories?

  • Clarinet Alone – unaccompanied clarinet solo
  • Accompanied – clarinet solo with accompaniment (piano, orchestra, chamber group). Includes sonata and concerto. Duets are not currently included. They may be added as a separate category in the future.
  • Collections – books of multiple solos and/or accompanied pieces. For example, collections of popular music like Star Wars Instrumental Solos or Strommen’s Broadway by Special Arrangement. Or books of shorter classical solos like Rubank/Voxman Concert and Contest Collection
  • Etude Books – the difference between a Collection and an Etude Book is a bit fuzzy. The intent is that ‘Collection’ contains solo performance pieces, while ‘Etude’ contains technical studies.
  • Scale Books – the primary focus of these books is scales, arpeggios, mechanism exercises, and articulation. They may include a few etudes also. Method books would usually be listed here.

Where did the data come from?

  • Syllabuses from Kansas State University, University of Minnesota, Nichols State University, Northern Illinois University, University of North Texas, Trinity College, ABRSM, and RCM
  • Various US state public school lists
  • Vendor catalogs, particularly CAMCO and Sheet Music Plus
  • Publications by Burnet Tuthill, Jenny Maclay, Cindy Renander, James Gillespie and others
  • Internet Archives: IMSLP, Clarinet Institute
  • Composite list of music owned by Katherine Carleton and me. plus maybe a few other friends.

What does the Info button do?

Info does not go to a specific website. Instead, launches a Google search for the composer and title. Since it’s a live search, it can produce some “interesting” results. For example. when I asked for Info on “Williams, John Victor’s Tale Clarinet”, Google showed me a 2022 obituary for John Victor Williams. The actual composer of Victor’s Tale is John Towner Williams, and he’s still living as of 2023.

Version history

  • 2023-12-22 Initial Release Emerging (12), Intermediate (30), Advanced (52)

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