Trills, and shakes, can mean different degrees

Recently there had been a UTUBE recording of Karl Leister playing the Weber Quintet final movement, and a call for replies to the performance.
I found the performance quite wanting, for Mr Leister used a way of trilling which I have always called a shake which leaves this ornament rather screamingly executed, while a simple trill is actually much easier, even on the Oehler clarinet and especially with a performer of the quality of Karl Leister. I felt my attention was called to the shake itself, rather than it’s function, which is simply an accent.
During the Baroque period in Music History, “shake” was used to mean trill, but this was prior to the actual codification of what is meant by a trill played in time, for instance in the slow movwment of the Pastoral at the cadential point in the long clarinet solo.
Nowadays a trill is a trill, and I use the word “shake” meaning a very rapid movement of the appendage more than the fingers, for instance in Capriccio Espagnol, first movement during the opening clarinet solo. The clarinetist can execute the trills on G rapidly with either the correct fingering or the first trill key, and because it is so short, no problem is discerned, and in addition, the trill is notated with a stong rinforzando accent.
In the performance of new music, I have often been asked to play trill utilizing the shake,the result usually being a frenetic , rather hysterical quality, which is what I heard on the UTUBE Weber, and really couldn’t believe or accept it.

I performed La Quatour Pour La Fin du Temps, by Olivier Messiaen last summer at Festival Alexandria.
There is a 7 minute clarinet solo called Abbyss, really called the end of the birds. The movement is full of trills and one cannot play one of these shaken, simply not permitted.
Hence my point. All of this is dependant on the dictates of the music, the period in which it was composed and the intent of the composer.
I hope this provides a clarification.
Sherman Friedland


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