This work by Francis Poulenc was written to commemorate Dennis Brain’s death.  It is a wonderful work, but often inaccessible to audiences.  Written or oral program notes significantly increase the audience’s understanding and appreciation of the work.  Some of the piece is violent in nature, depicting Brain’s tragic car accident, requiring fast tonguing at a fortissimo dynamic.  The work also demands long, sustained playing, and includes a long hand stopped section.  There are wide leaps, some of which span several octaves, but no lip trills.  This dramatic composition requires maturity and sensitivity both emotionally and musically.  When approached correctly, this emotional work can create an intense connection between the performer and the audience. 


Composer Poulenc, Francis
Dates (1899-1963)
Duration 9:00
Horn Range D3 to A5
Level Advanced
Clef Treble Clef and “Old-Notation” Bass Clef 
Techniques Glissando, Stopped Horn
Era/Style 20th Century
Country/Region France
Accompaniment Available Piano
Accompaniment Difficulty Easy
Movements One Movement