Before Hector Berlioz the three trombones found in a symphony were most often cast in the Germanic tradition of Alto/Tenor/Bass.
AFTER Berlioz it was Tenor/Tenor/Tenor, as Berlioz decided it was the tenor that was the most powerful and complete iteration of the famous slide instrument invented by Germans and loved by the Gabrielis, Schutz, Handel, Mozart and Beethoven himself.
A student of the Classics, Berlioz was probably more than a little inspired by the Ancient Greek concept of the ideal situated as a mean between excess and deficiency. While the moderns have mostly settled on Tenor/Tenor/BAss-Berlioz’s basic idea was correct and visionary.
It might be argued that the trombone is the most important tenor solo voice in instrumental music; but it cannot be argued that it is at least among the top three: ‘cello, trombone, tenor saxophone. When one considers all forms of music-the case for trombone is greatly strengthened.
Enjoy this flamboyant, quirky and almost impossible to play brass quartet version of the “Roman Carnival Overture”. Musical non-sequiturs erupt and themes interrupt as the chaos that ensues elicits a beauty that is also most un-Germanic.
Brass Miami Quartet Jose Sibaja, trumpet; Domingo Pagliuca, tenor trombone; Brian Neal solo trumpet & David Brubeck, bass trombone
c. 2023 David Brubeck/Dave Brubeck the younger