This concerto has the unusual addition of an optional male voice choir. Many Russian elements influenced Bryars when he was writing the piece, not least the text for the bass voices which is taken from Glinkas song cycle Farewell to St Petersburg. Bryars writes The orchestration is quite light throughout, so that the singing quality of the double bass can emerge. The emphasis in terms of tessitura is on the middle register, though in the closing section there is a passage in natural harmonics. Although the piece is not designed to be a virtuoso showpiece, there is a brief cadenza in which the soloist is supported at times by other solo instruments (bass clarinet, viola, cello, bass).
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