Relevant Research: Dr. Mark Wolbers on 'Alto Carinet -- The endangered species of the American Band'2012-10-14 by
The viola is the butt of many instrument jokes in the orchestra. In the band, that instrument is the alto clarinet. Although the violin and cello can cover the range of the viola, its unique timbre and voice is considered essential. In the American band however, the alto clarinet is facing extinction
UAA music professor Dr. Mark Wolbers explores how this situation has come to pass in America. In his research, he has explored the history and criticism of the alto clarinet and explains how this misplaced criticism has led to marketplace impacts in instrument development, manufacturing and music publishing.
As a performer and conductor, Wolbers has championed the alto clarinet as a solo, chamber and band instrument. Over the last three years he has performed solo and chamber works for the alto clarinet in recitals across the state. And in March of 2011, he was selected to present a lecture/demonstration on the alto clarinet for the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) national conference in Seattle.
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