Compositions by Michael Kimbell

Please click on a title to hear recordings or excerpts, view texts or program notes, or download PDF files. PDF files are free of charge except for harp compositions, which are available for a modest fee.

Brass:

Ricercar for brass octet, 2000  4 min  3221

Clarinet:

Five Dialogues for two clarinets, 1967  5min
(Five short, witty pieces for advanced players)

Rondino scherzando for Eb clarinet, bassoon and piano, 2008  4min
(also in a version for full orchestra)

Sonatina for C or Bb clarinet & piano, 2010  11min (3 movements)

Concertino for C or Bb clarinet and orchestra, 2012  11min
111(solo)1(+opt Cbsn) 1000 str (based on Sonatina)

Choral Works:

Of Birds and Beasts for SA chorus (or 2 solists) and piano, 1979
(Winner of the 1979 Music Teachers Assn. of California “Composers Today” Competition)
1) The Owl (text by Alfred, Lord Tennyson) — Hear an excerpt
2) The Little Forest Bird (Transylvanian folk song)
3) The Two Rats (anonymous poem)
4) Song of the Whales (Albanian folk melody)
5) The Cuckoo (Austrian folk song)

Remembering for Atonement for SATB chorus and orchestra, 2016  8min
2222 2230 SATB timp str
(Poem by Viktoryia Neverov-Krstic, in commemoration of the sent-down youth of the Chinese cultural revolution)

Flute:

Variations on Springfield Mountain for flute and piano, 1993  5min
(“On Springfield Mountain there did dwell / A lovely youth, I knew him well-eye-ell.” These lively variations, based on one of America’s oldest folk songs, retell the story of the young couple who die of snake poison; an ironic twist is given to the ending.)

Poème for flute and harp, 2011  12min  (see below)

Harp:

Poème for violin and harp, or flute and harp, 2009  12min  (identical harp parts)
(Premiered June 2009 in the Kaisersaal, Ottobeuren, Germany and at Salon Linton France, Vienna, Austria by Nándor and Katrina Szederkényi, and performed at the 2011 World Harp Congress in Vancouver, Canada)

Ballade Arctique (long version) for solo harp, 2013  14min
(Musical retelling of a true story related by Canadian author Farley Mowat in his book People of the Deer. An Innuit hunter fails to bring back food; his wife and child perish. Featured on CD “Fantasies & Fugues by Katrina Szederkényi.)

Arctic Ballade (short version) for solo harp, 2013  7min

Into the Stars, A Musical Journey into the Carina Nebula (Toccata and Fugue on B-A-C-H) for solo harp, 2015  7min
(Premiered by Katrina Szederkényi at the 2016 Szeged Harp Festival and Competition)

Opera:

The Hot Iron, opera in one act for three singers (SAB) and piano, 1996

Orchestra (Chamber):

Kritik des Herzens for tenor and chamber orchestra, 2003 (See description under Voice.)

Time Does Not Move for narrator and chamber or full orchestra, 2006  10min
Version A: 1110 0110 1perc str
Version B: 1111 1110 1perc str
Version C (full orch.): 12(EH)22 2100 1perc str
(German poem by Gottfried Keller,
English performing translation by Edith & Michael Kimbell)

Concertino for C or Bb clarinet and orchestra, 2012 (based on Sonatina) 11min 111(solo)1(+optional Cbsn) 1000 str

Front Line for narrator and chamber orchestra, 2014  12min 2(pic)111 1000 1perc str (poems by Emmanuel Williams, recitation with music)
1) Front-line man
2) The Soldier’s Tale
3) Sanctuary

Chaconne on a theme from Purcell’s “When I am laid in earth”, 2018  4min 1111 1000 str
(also in a version for viols)

Orchestra (Full):

Arcadian Symphony, 1997  25min  2(pic)222 2130 2perc str
1) Overture
2) Scherzo
3) Variations
4) Gavotte
5) Tarantella

Rondino capriccioso, 2001  4min  2(pic)2(EH)2(Eb)2 4231 3perc str
(Dramatic, sarcastic rondo/quodlibet featuring a Turkish march and a surprise ending; other tunes that flit in and out of the texture include Haydn’s tune Austria and Home, Sweet Home. In a mischievous, if bittersweet comment on events of the early 21st century, the latter tune is superimposed on the Dies Irae.)

Taklamakán, tone poem for orchestra, 2004  18min  2(pic)2(EH)22 4331 2perc str
(Dramatic and atmospheric tone poem inspired by the “Silk Road” and Mars deserts, evoking the feelings of mystery and the wonder of discovery, along with intimations of the impermanence of natural conditions which might foster life, as well as the fragility inherent in both the means and the results of discovery.)

Time Does Not Move for narrator and full or chamber orchestra, 2006  10min
Version A: 1110 0110 1perc str
Version B: 1111 1110 1perc str
Version C (full orch.): 12(EH)22 2100 1perc str
(German poem by Gottfried Keller, English performing translation
by Edith & Michael Kimbell)

Rondino scherzando, 2007  4 min  2pics 2 4(2Eb+2A) 2 2000 1perc str
(also in a version for Eb clarinet, bassoon and piano)

Celestial Encounters, 2008 (based on Fantasy Sonata 1st movt)  6min
2(pic)2(EH)22 4230 1perc str

Golden Gate Barcarolle, 2015  9min  Version A: 2(pic)2(EH)22 2130 2perc str
Version B: 2(pic)1(EH)13(Cbsn) 1110 2perc str

Piano duet:

Please see the Editions page.

Piano solo:

Fantasy Sonata, 1998  25min
1) Celestial Encounters
2) Nebulae
3) Energies
4) Dark Forms

Nocturne, 2007  6min

String trio:

Please see the Editions page.

Violin:

Poème for violin and harp, 2009

Viols:

Chaconne on a theme from Purcell’s “When I am laid in earth”, 2018

Voice:

Three Sonnets from the Portuguese for high voice and piano, 1965
(Poems by Elizabeth Barrett Browning)
1) When our two souls stand up erect and strong
2) I lived with visions for my company
3) Beloved, thou hast brought me many flowers

Three Lieder for medium voice and piano, 1969
1) Auf eine Lampe (Eduard Mörike)
2) Abendständchen (Clemens Brentano)
3) Mondnacht (Josef von Eichendorff)

Emigrant Songs for medium voice and piano, 1998
(Three 19th century American songs with new piano accompaniments)
1) The Spinning Wheel (traditional, reworked into a dramatic art song)
(excerpt)
2) America, Commerce and Freedom (sailor’s song by Alexander Reinagle)
3) Do They Think of Me at Home (Charles W. Glover & J.E. Carpenter)

Kritik des Herzens for tenor and chamber orchestra, 2003  10 min  1111 1000 1perc str
Version for tenor and piano, 2005
(Six Lieder in the tradition of Gustav Mahler and Richard Strauss; poems by the great German satirist and cartoonist Wilhelm Busch (1832-1908). Lyrical vignettes and ironic musings on life, love, loss, resignation and reconciliation. Optional English singing translations by Edith & Michael Kimbell.)
1) Es sitzt ein Vogel auf dem Leim
2) Seid mir nur nicht gar so traurig
3) Es flog einmal ein muntres Fliegel
4) Ferne Berge seh’ ich glühen
5) Sie war ein Blümlein hübsch und fein
6) O du, die mir die Liebste war

Woodwinds:

Woodwind Quintet, 1968  15 min
(An audacious & sarcastic first movement, a breakneck scherzo, a lyrical adagio and a lively fugue are all framed by a fantastic and atmospheric introduction that reappears at the end.)

Rondino scherzando for Eb clarinet, bassoon and piano, 2008  4min
(also in a version for full orchestra)