My dad was a clarinetist, but I was more interested in the viola, initially. I was steered to the clarinet for financial reasons, and never looked back. I was always a singer and an instrumentalist, having had an interest in early music from my school days. I’ve played recorder for decades, and added flute and sax, and later duduks to find my voice in many styles. At one point I sang torch songs, but I’d rather sing early music.
Some of my favorite pieces of music are scored for all strings like Barber’s Adagio and Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. But my other favorites are all over the board in an eclectic mix. One is a setting of Sanctus sung by The Hilliard Ensemble and features an improvised soprano sax solo over it by Jan Garbarek–just dreamy. “Oasis” by Tarja Turunen on her Winter Storm album features the duduk in a solo that just kills me. I like whatever clarinet piece I am currently working on. Right now, it’s Khachaturian’s Trio for Violin, Clarinet and Piano.