This suite is drawn from the composer’s new score for the vintage 1928 silent comedy of the same name starring Charlie Bowers. The original film score runs 20 minutes and is scored for piccolo, sopranino recorder, 2 soprano recorders, ocarina, oboe, English horn, Eb clarinet, Bb clarinet, 2 bass clarinets, contrabass clarinet, banjo, slide whistle, saw, glockenspiel, percussion, toy piano, 3 melodicas, accordian, and piano. Here it has been pared down to 11 minutes and rescored for clarinet quartet.
Synopsis of the wonderfully weird film: Scotland Yard detective Charley MacNeesha carries his constant companion MacGregor–who is either a hairy insect or a buggy-looking mouse–in a matchbox. The pair travels to New York to solve the case of the Fuzz-Faced Phantom who causes full-grown chickens to hatch from eggs, pots to rain from the ceiling, and pants to dance of their own volition in a surrealist comedy that anticipated Salvador Dali and Luis Bunuel’s “An Andalusian Dog” by more than a year.
Solo parts included: Clarinet in Eb, Clarinet in Bb 1, Clarinet in Bb 2, Bass Clarinet