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Piccolo Clarinet A♭ clarinet Woodwind instrument Classification Wind Woodwind Single-reed Hornbostel-Sachs classification 422.211.2-71 (Single-reeded aerophone with keys) Related instruments Clarinet Saxophone Tárogató (modern) Oboe Chalumeau Musicians Clarinetists The piccolo clarinets are members of the clarinet family, smaller and higher pitched than the more familiar high soprano clarinets in E♭ and D. None are common, but the most often used piccolo clarinet is the A♭ clarinet, sounding a minor seventh higher than the B♭ clarinet. Shackleton also lists obsolete instruments in C, B♭, and A♮. Some writers call these sopranino clarinets or octave clarinets. The boundary between the piccolo and soprano clarinets is not well-defined, and the rare instruments in G and F might be considered as either. Shackleton along with many early twentieth-century composers uses the term "piccolo clarinet" to refer to the E♭ and D clarinets as well (piccolo merely meaning "small" in Italian). This designation is now less common today; with the E♭ and D instruments are more usually designated soprano clarinets. The A♭ clarinet is pitched a minor seventh higher than the B♭ soprano clarinet. Its lowest note, E ,sounds as concert middle-C, the same as many concert flutes. Clarinets pitched in A-flat appeared frequently in European wind bands, particularly in Spain and Italy, at least through the middle of the 20th century, and are called for in the stage-band parts for several operas by Verdi.[1] Cecil Forsyth associated the high instruments with Austria saying, "Clarinets in (high) F, and even in (high) A♭ are occasionally used abroad. The latter instrument is regularly employed in the Austrian military bands."[2] A famous example of extensive use of a high clarinet in a Viennese small ensemble was the Schrammel quartet, consisting of two violins (the brothers Johann and Josef Schrammel), a bass guitar, and G clarinet, played by Georg Dänzer, during the 1880s.[1] Size comparison among the A♭, E♭, and B♭ clarinets The A♭ clarinet is not uncommon in clarinet choir arrangements--for instance, those of Lucien Calliet, including Mozart's Marriage of Figaro overture--though the instrument is often optional or cued in other voices. There are parts for A♭ clarinet in Béla Bartók's Scherzo for Piano and Orchestra, op. 2 ("mostly in unison with the E♭ or piccolo") and in John Tavener's Celtic Requiem (1969).[1] Several chamber works of Hans-Joachim Hespos employ the A♭ clarinet,[3] including the wild go which also features soprano sarrusophone, heckelphone, and tárogató. Hespos also uses the A♭ clarinet in the orchestral work Interactions.[4] Size comparison of the B♭, E♭, and A♭ reeds; note the greater difference between A♭ and E♭ reed sizes than between E♭ and B♭. At least four manufacturers currently produce A♭ clarinets: Leblanc, L. A. Ripamonti, Orsi Wind Instruments and Schwenk and Seggelke. As of 2003, the Leblanc A♭ was only being made under special order.[5] Ripamonti produces both German and French system (including Full Boehm) A♭ clarinets. Schwenk and Seggelke make German system clarinets in A♭ and high G. Notes ^ a b c Basil Tschaikov, "The high clarinets," in Colin Lawson, The Cambridge companion to the clarinet, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), pp. 52-55. ^ Forsyth, Orchestration, second edition, p. 281 (Dover Reprint) ISBN 978-0486243832 ^ "Hans-Joachim Hespos - Complete work (engl.) - Ensemble works". Hans-Joachim Hespos web site. http://www.hespos.info/index.php?navi=content&id_area=1&level=2&npoint=113,187,0,0,0,0. Retrieved 2007-02-07.  ^ "Hans-Joachim Hespos - Complete work (engl.) - Orchestral works". Hans-Joachim Hespos web site. http://www.hespos.info/index.php?navi=content&id_area=1&level=2&npoint=113,189,0,0,0,0. Retrieved 2007-02-07.  ^ Post by Diz to the Clarinet List, 2003-06-27 based on information from Leblanc Sydney References Nicholas Shackleton. "Clarinet", Grove Music Online, ed. L. Macy (accessed 21 February 2006), grovemusic.com (subscription access). External links L. A. Ripamonti's A♭ clarinet page Schwenk and Seggelke's A♭ clarinet page v · d · eClarinet Clarinet family Piccolo clarinet · E♭ clarinet · Soprano clarinet · Saxonette · Quarter tone clarinet · Basset clarinet · Clarinette d'amour · Basset horn · Alto clarinet · Bass clarinet · Contra-alto clarinet · Contrabass clarinet · Octocontra-alto clarinet · Octocontrabass clarinet Systems of Fingering Albert · Boehm · Mazzeo · Müller · Öhler Clarinetists Heinrich Baermann · Acker Bilk · Walter Boeykens · Jack Brymer · James Campbell  · Eddie Daniels · Buddy DeFranco · Eric Dolphy · Stanley Drucker · Pete Fountain · Martin Fröst · Benny Goodman · Woody Herman · Thea King · Henry Lazarus · Karl Leister · Sabine Meyer · Pee Wee Russell · Artie Shaw · David Shifrin · Anton Stadler · Milenko Stefanović · Richard Stoltzman · Squidward Tentacles Clarinet makers Category:Clarinet makers · Category:Clarinet manufacturing companies · List of clarinet makers · Amati-Denak · E. K. Blessing · Buffet Crampon · Johann Christoph Denner · Benedikt Eppelsheim · Stephen Fox · Heinrich Grenser · Howarth of London · Jupiter Band Instruments · Leblanc · Iwan Müller · Adolphe Sax · Selmer · Yamaha Corporation Other Category:Clarinets · Category:Compositions for clarinet · Clarinet choir · Clarinet concerto · Clarinet sonata · Clarinet-violin-piano trio