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Up to No Good

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Brad Baumgardner

Brad Baumgardner

Subtitle: Concerto for Bass Clarinet and Wind Band

General Info

Year: 2016
Duration: c. 15:00
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Luyben Music
Cost: Score and Parts - $65.00


1. Fingers Crossed (Prelude and Double Dare) - 4:30
2. Little White Lies (what we don't know can't hurt us . . .) - 5:00
3. The Devil's in the Details (I hope you brought your woodscrews) - 5:30

Instrumentation (one player per part)

Full Score
Solo Bass Clarinet
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II
Percussion I-II-III-IV, including:

  • Chinese Opera Gong
  • Claves
  • Cowbell (3)
  • Glockenspiel
  • Gong (2)
  • Marimba
  • Slapstick
  • Snare Drum
  • Splash Cymbal
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tam-Tam
  • Triangle
  • Tubular Bells
  • Vibraphone
  • Wind Chimes, metal (2)
  • Wood Block (2)
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Though in its modern form the bass clarinet is a flexible and lyrical instrument, it was first popularized in many romantic orchestrations as a harbinger of melancholy. This somber role came to influence many of the early uses of the bass clarinet, and Berlioz even describes Wagner’s writing for the instrument as always displaying a “character of solemn resignation.” The twentieth century introduced a more liberal use of the instrument’s abilities, but the solemn character assigned by Wagner still influenced much of the literature, which expanded to include sinister or comical roles for the instrument in programmatic works.

This traditional “dark” character is referenced and realized primarily in a capricious form in Up to No Good. The material is presented in three movements, and in each instance the bass clarinet soloist manages to “corrupt” the other players by influencing the musical material and goading the wind ensemble into a reaction. The overall formal structure supports this approach by featuring the first movement as a kind of prelude (or dare) that is eventually accepted and addressed in the third movement. This is referenced in the subtitle for the third movement by a phrase often used by my brother when issuing a personal challenge –- “I hope you brought your woodscrews ...”

- Program Note by composer

Up to No Good was commissioned by a consortium including:

Dr. Gordon R. Brock, University of North Florida Music Flagship Program Dr. John C. Carmichael, University of South Florida Dr. Patrick K. Carney, Limestone College Andrew Grenci, Bass Clarinetist Alan Mitchell, Andrews University Nicholas Morrison, Utah State University Dr. Danh T. Pham, Washington State University Dr. Frederick Speck, University of Louisville Dr. Reed Thomas, Middle Tennessee State University Dr. David Vickerman, The College of New Jersey Chris David Westover, Bethel College Dr. Norman Wika, Northeastern State University


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of South Florida (Tampa) Wind Ensemble (John Carmichael, conductor) – 14 November 2017

Works for Winds by This Composer