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Updated per information received from Terry Halvorson
Updated per information received from Merlin Williams
I’m surprised there aren’t any clarifying comments regarding the WW I book and the various ethnic instruments.
All the penny whistles, recorders, and pan pipes are written, with a few gray areas about the proper octave, in concert pitch. So, unless you are really very adept at transposing for the instrument at hand, it would be beneficial to rewrite many of the parts. I transposed all the penny whistle parts into “D” to more closely match the fingering of the silver flutes. (I also, more sacrilegiously, transposed all the alto and sopranino recorder parts to match the soprano recorder fingerings–again, with the intent of keeping the fingering as similar as possible regardless of what instrument I held. That is, a written G would be played with all three fingers of the left hand no matter which penny whistle or recorder–or flute–was in use.)
First off, and the easiest to discuss, in the book the pan pipes have a written range from A above middle C to F an octave + min 6th higher (3 ledger lines). All the parts are diatonically in C Major, so you’ll need an instrument to cover that range in that tonality. (All my comments, of course, assume the original keys are kept.)
The passages for the recorders and penny whistles sometimes do not match the octave(s) as they are in the score. (Sometimes they do and are not particularly effective in that particular range!) Some experimentation might be in order.
The penny whistles listed are accurate, but there are a couple spots that are questionable. In #22 Wick, it is not clear in one spot which instrument should be played, the high soprano in D or the at pitch tenor in D. Then there is #24 Come Spirit, Come Charm. Again, which D p.w. should be used is debatable. It’s almost at the extreme top of the tenor range, and one note too low for the soprano. There is also one 8 bar passage that is just impractical on any p.w., much less the ones in D: fairly rapid configurations around C7 flat 5, as well as mixed E-flat/naturals and A-flat/naturals. This whole passage is better off on regular flute.
As for the recorders, the only mistake is in #9 It’s A Maze. The opening sopranino recorder part is mistakenly notated as if it was a soprano/tenor recorder. This same passage also has an octave issue: Play it in the written octave and it would be very shrill. Take it down an octave and you dip below the range on the instrument. It’s quite possible that this passage should have been written to be played on soprano instead of sopranino.
As mentioned before, I rewrote a lot of my parts to standardize the fingering between all the disparate instruments. For most people playing the book, who are likely going to be primarily classically-trained flutists/doublers, I would highly suggest a similar approach, often referencing the score to double-check the correct pitches and octaves.
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