Programme Notes – Downtown Diversions (2000-2001)

A trombone concerto

The character of this work is that of a serenade or divertimento but with Jazz and Latin influences. I have attempted to explore the mercurial aspects of the solo trombone, avoiding more commonplace characteristics of the instrument (there is not a single glissando for the soloist.) The piece is in three movements: fast – slow – fast that alternate dance-like and more lyrical passages. The first movement is swift and light footed and contains the two main themes that form the basis for the whole work, the first at the start by the lone soloist, and a more singing second subject that becomes the main theme for the laid-back second movement. Here the band consists of saxophones, brass and rhythm section only. The woodwind and horns return for the finale, which is a variation of the first movement in 10/8 time. The writing for the soloist becomes more virtuosic as the movement progresses and leads to an abrupt conclusion.