Green Flash (for Clarinet Quintet)


score + parts


“Green Flash” refers to the optical phenomenon that can occur just after sunset (or right before sunrise) with the right atmospheric conditions. For a brief moment, when the sun is almost entirely below the horizon, the upper rim of the sun can appear green, as the refracted light from the sun passes through an increasingly thick atmosphere.

Green Flash was written for the second season of the Flatirons Chamber Music Festival; the premiere in Boulder, Colorado, was part of a concert called “Transfigured Night at the Barn” was designed to bridge the gap between late afternoon and dusk, following Ravel’s String Quartet in F Major and preceding Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht.

The music in Green Flash marks this transition from golden hour to twilight as it progresses from pastoral (and largely pentatonic) F-centric material to a slightly darker C-sharp focus (perhaps alluding to the tonality of Beethoven’s famous Moonlight Sonata); the clarinetist simultaneously exchanges the brighter B-flat clarinet for the more mellow A clarinet. Before the piece concludes, however, the music shifts once more, arriving in a twinkling E major.


Includes: 1 score and complete set of parts (clarinet in Bb doubling clarinet in A, violin 1, violin 2, viola, cello)


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