Tuesday, February 2, 2010


I was pleased this evening to discover that euph/trombone player Kevin Thompson has posted a free .pdf of his euphonium edition of the Telemann Fantasias here. I just printed them out in the past hour or so and have noticed a few interesting things. First of all, and quite significantly, he has changed the keys from the originals (down a major 10th), but he has maintained the original key relationships across all 12 pieces.

So, Telemann's original keys, in order, are: A maj, A min, B min, Bb maj, C maj, D min, D maj, E min, E maj, F# min, G maj, G min. And Thompson's corresponding arrangements are: F maj, F min, G min, Gb min, Ab min, Bb min, Bb maj, C min, C maj, D min, Eb maj, Eb min.

I generally like to maintain key relationships when I'm arranging a set of pieces that "go together"; however I didn't do that in this case. I could blame the fact that for half (+1) of the Fantasias I'm using someone else's arrangements, but that's not it. I like where Alan Raph's and my arrangements sit on the horn, and I really I think I had convinced myself that to maintain the key relationships, this set would become prohibitive to play either from a range or a key signature perspective.

Thompson blows my assumption out of the water. His arrangements go a bit high in some cases, though never above high C (5 spaces above the bass clef staff)--high, but not unreasonable. And he never goes below Bb (2nd line on the bass clef staff), which is one of the most comfortable notes to play on the horn. As far as key signatures go--I'm not even sure how this managed to work out this way--there's not a single sharp key in the whole set. He goes from C maj (no accidentals) to Eb min (6 flats) and never touches a sharp key. That's another way of saying, the keys he's using are all very euph friendly (or, in the case of Eb min, at least modestly euph friendly).

As I've been thumbing through his edition, it seems to be very well done and I'm looking forward to trying his arrangements (though I will be sticking with the versions I described in this post for my recording project)

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