Sara Fraker, Oboe
Jerry Kirkbride, Clarinet
Rex Woods, Piano
Idylls for Oboe, Clarinet and Piano brings to light a collection of significant and little-known chamber music works for this uncommon trio combination. The disc features two world premiere recordings: Ave Maris Stella by English composer Judith Bingham (b. 1952), and the title work Idylls, a four-movement song cycle by American composer Richard Faith (b.1926). Originally scored in 1972 for two unaccompanied countertenors, Bingham’s 2002 reimagining of the piece opens incredible possibilities for acoustic and tonal effects between the two treble woodwinds. Rich seascapes and landscapes emerge too from Faith’s song cycle, especially in the tumultuous final movement, On the Isle of Skye. American modernist Marion Bauer (1882-1955) applies inventive harmonies to a traditional four-movement scheme in her Duo for Oboe and Clarinet. The Center of the Known World by Randall Davidson (b. 1953) charts the exploration of an inner emotional landscape. It utilizes the acoustic phenomenon of difference tones between the two woodwinds. The disc concludes with a gem by the French romantic Gabriel Marie (1852-1928), a sincere and ephemeral trio.
Clarinetist Jerry Kirkbride’s career was centered in the world of chamber music as a member of the famed Dorian Wind Quintet from 1970 to 2012. For twenty years, he also performed in a diverse variety of chamber music concerts and freelanced extensively in New York City.
Oboist Sara Fraker teaches at the University of Arizona Fred Fox School of Music. She is also a member of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and a faculty artist at the Bay View Music Festival. Fraker is principal oboist of the GRAMMY-nominated ensemble True Concord Voices & Orchestra.
Rex Woods, pianist, has performed in the United States, Canada, Mexico, France, China, and Australia as both a soloist and chamber musician. He was awarded the Otto Guth Memorial Award from the San Francisco Opera Center for excellence in vocal coaching and was the recipient of the Premier Prix de Fontainebleau in chamber music.