Gilbert P. Woody
Concerto for Tenor Trombone:
Solo trombne and strings

N.p., ,
Publisher: Really Good Music LLC
Date of Publication: 2015

Score and parts

Primary Genre: Solo Tenor Trombone - with orchestra

Gilbert Woody holds degrees from Cal State Sacramento (BM, MM). He performed as a trombonist with various ensembles, including the Sacramento Symphony and also taught music history at Sacramento State College. Since his retirement he has been quite active as a composer having penned three symphonies, a Concerto for Bass Trombone, Concerto for Tenor Trombone with Woodwinds and numerous short pieces for both bass and tenor trombone. Several of these works are available for viewing on YouTube, key in Gilbert Woody.

Scoring for this Concerto includes tenor trombone and string orchestra, although it also works for trombone and string quintet. The formal, harmonic, melodic, rhythmic and textural elements do not venture past 18th century compositional practices. Harmonically, each movement is static with little in terms of modulation or chromatic alteration. The texture is predominantly homophonic and the strings are used principally in accompanying the trombone. The trombone part is idiomatic with nice lyrical lines. It poses few technical challenges other than long phrases and extended playing with no rest.

I. Andante features two thematic ideas, one lyrical the other reminiscent of a Vivaldi concerto ritornello.
II. Theme and Variations takes the descending line motive from the first movement as its theme. This movement is the most technically challenging for the trombone but certainly within reach of a competent college level performer.
III. Rondo also utilizes basic melodic material from the first movement with a modulation from C minor to G minor.

Printing and layout are beautifully done. There is a fine performance on YouTube, from San Diego State, with trombonist Eric Starr accompanied by the Hausmann String Quartet plus double bass:

Reviewer: Karl Hinterbichler
Review Published June 15, 2023