Franz Peter Cibulka (1946-2016) completed his musical studies in clarinet, composition and conducting at the University of Music in Graz, Austria. He served as Professor of Clarinet, Chamber Music and Music Theory at the Johann Joseph Fux Conservatory in Graz until 2002 when he began working exclusively as free-lance composer. His list of works includes more than 600 compositions of the most diverse instrumentation and styles resulting from his artistic collaboration with various performers.
'Claroness' is a sophisticated and appealing piece within the modern literature for Clarinet Choir. Its title, a combination of 'Clarinet' and 'Baroness' (an Austrian noble woman), points toward the Austrian operetta tradition. In context with the subtitle 'Capriccio fur Klarinettenchor' ('Capricccio for Clarinet Choir'), we receive further hints towards a traditional, yet good-humored background. Cibulka's compositions often describe an event, a geographical area, or a character. The characteristics that are associated with the respective themes are expressed in the music. In this context, we can see the piece 'Claroness' as the portrait of a capricious baroness who is in this case embodied by the medium of the clarinet. The alternating sequences of energetically-fast passages, complicated rhythms, and lyrical melodies are allowing for this interpretation.
The newly revised edition of 'Claroness' is the result of an intense musical collaboration between Barbara Heilmair and Franz Cibulka when the 'Madrid-Version' was premiered at the 2015 ICA ClarinetFest by the Austrian Clarinet Choir. Dr. Heilmair was performing in the clarinet choir and was able to witness both Mag. Franz Cibulka's creative rehearsal work and his comments regarding the stylistic interpretation of the piece. The two clarinet professors also had the opportunity for in-depth conversations about the two versions of 'Claroness' and Cibulka's other compositions. The new edition of 'Claroness' is a combination of the 2012 'Valencia Version' and the 2015 'Madrid Version' scores by Franz Cibulka. The author's intent was to create a 'final' version of the work that preserves the music as detailed as possible and that also makes the work clear and accessible to ensemble directors, music educators, and clarinet players.
A full score and set of parts are included. The instrumentation is for E-flat clarinet, B-flat clarinets 1-4, alto clarinet or basset horn, bass clarinet, E-flat contra alto clarinet, and B-flat contrabass clarinet. Optional parts for bassoon and double bass are also included to support or substitute for the contra clarinet parts. 2 stands are included for Clarinets 1-4 and 1 stand for each of the others. Extra parts can be purchased separately from Jeanne, Inc. Duration approximately 7.5 minutes.