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maecenas music - wind bands and ensembles

Master Humphrey's Clockfor Wind Orchestra, Revised 2018

Binney, Malcolm

I    Boz
II   Expectations
III  Cavaletto
IV  Four Character Studies

A panoramic tribute to Charles Dickens and the gallery of colourful characters and episodes that populate his extraordinary writings.

Master Humphrey's Clock was a weekly periodical produced by Dickens which included a miscellany of articles and sketches. Malcolm Binney's substantial work is in four movements which plays continuously but with a vigorous fanfare providing the link between the contrasting movements.

The first movement is entitled Boz, a pseudonym under which Dickens wrote; It is dynamic, rhythmically complex and makes considerable demands on the player.

The second, Expectations is a kind of introduction and allegro, the reflective melancholy of the opening contrasting sharply with the optimistic high spirits of Peggotty's Hop.

Cavaletto opens in a mood of restless disquiet and anticipation, but despondency is suddenly thrown to the wind against the steady ticking of the clock. Dicken's childhood fantasies of theatre, puppets, fairy tales and monsters spring vividly to life.

The final Character Studies (the disreputable Fagin, the appealing but tragic Nancy and the eccentric, outrageous Sairey Gamp) take the idea of miscellany and culminate in Bozmania, a blaze of colour, noise and merriment where elements from all the previous movements combine in a joyous and exhilarating conclusion.

A real celebration of life! 

Grade AB 8 US 5

27 minutes


Set and Score

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Master Humphrey's Clock move 1 Binney

Master Humphrey's Clock move 2 Binney

Master Humphrey's Clock move 3 Binney

Master Humphrey's Clock move 4 Binney

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