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Shostakovich Polka - which saxophone?

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Shostakovich Polka - which saxophone?

Thursday, March 13, 2014 3:51 AM
Author: Not Found

I will be performing saxophone in the orchestral version of Shostakovich's Polka from The Golden Age on March 22.  The part does not specify which sax, but is pitched in Bb.  The recordings I've found are about 2/3 soprano and 1/3 tenor.  Does anyone know which is more authentic?  Or do you have an opinion?  I'd like to be more knowledgable before I ask the conductor.


Soprano or Tenor?
Friday, March 14, 2014 4:58 PM
Author: Not Found

I had always thought it was for tenor saxophone in that particular movement. Actually I arranged it for saxophone ensemble a few years ago, here's a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rGQXks5qb-E

I guess it is pretty vague in the score. Just found the London Symphony recording on Youtube and it is definitely soprano. Hmmmm.... and now I'm noticing a couple of "suspect" notes in my arrangement. Fun piece! Have a great time regardless of which saxophone you play!

Matt Johnston

Thanks for the link, Matthew.
Monday, March 24, 2014 3:57 AM
Author: Not Found

Thanks for the link, Matthew.  It sounds like a fun arrangement.  The conductor left it up to my discretion and I chose soprano.  I think the colour of the sound fits the quirkiness of the work and it dovetailed nicely with the clarinet, being in the same range.  The added bonus was an easier quick switch as I was doubling on contrabassoon.  The concert went well - now to practice Rhapsody in Blue for next week.

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