Bass Clarinet Concerto Commission

Bass Clarinet Concerto Commissioning Project

I’ve always had a soft spot for the Bass Clarinet. When I was a student, my younger sister picked up the Bass Clarinet in the school band, so its sound has been with me nearly as long as I’ve been a musician.

After listening to Bass Clarinetists speak passionately about their instrument had now neglected its been in the realm of solo literature, I got the idea that it would be a fantastic project to write a concerto for the instrument.

About the Work

If we think of a soloist in a concerto as a character in a story, then we automatically envision that soloist as the hero - the protagonist. But what if we reversed the role? What if our main character, the soloist, were the villain?

That is the premise of my forthcoming Bass Clarinet Concerto. The dastardly character will emerge as the character develops turning from good to evil.

The first movement will document the villain's turn from good to evil. The second movement will show off the villain's secret lair. Finally, the third movement will show the villain's downfall.


A 20-minute (or thereabouts), multi-movement concerto for Bass Clarinet and wind ensemble.

Wind ensemble part should be playable by an advanced high school ensemble.

A work for professional bass clarinetist (instrument to low C).


On average, rates for a work for large ensemble range from $500 to $1,000 per minute of music. To keep this on the affordable side of things, I will be working from the lower end of this range. For a work that I project to be 20 minutes in length, this will total to $10,000 (roughly $500 per minute of music). This will be the minimum guaranteed length of the work. At half this amount ($5,000) I will begin the composition of the work. With the full amount, I will also be providing a Piano reduction of the full band score.

The final cost will include the engraving of the score and preparation of all the parts.

Challenges and Time Frame

As I have written 6 concerti and 10 works for wind ensemble, the challenges are few.

Once the project is half funded ($5,000), I will begin the composition process. Something along the lines of a concerto can take several months of work to complete, though I expect this process only to take around 2 months if all goes smoothly.

Benefits to the Supporter

All levels receive the rewards of the lower levels as well as that level’s reward.

At $25 and up, your name will appear on a special page on the score.

At $50 you will receive a digital copy of the full score and a printed and solo part.

At $100 you will receive a bound copy of the score and solo part

At $250 you will receive a complete set of parts and the rights to perform the work with the ensemble of your choosing.

At $1,000 you will have one of the movements dedicated in your name.

At $2,500 the entire piece will be dedicated to you.


Bret Newton
Gainesville, TX

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