On Sunday May 4, I played my first public performance on the Ridenour (hard rubber) “A” Clarinet. It was a performance of the Serenade, Opus 93, by Hans Gal, and the music was a first for me as well. It was written in 1935 for Clarinet, Violin and Cello. We performed it at The Unitarian Church in Montreal along with the Abime by Messiaen, and the Beethoven and Milwaud Trios.
I was most interested in the “A” clarinet as it was my first performance on this instrument and as we all know. anything can happen.
But, the clarinet, Toms A was superb. There wasn’t a single problem and everything I have said has been born out by the performance. I recorded only the Gal and it stood up very well to all my criteria.
The work is kind of like a Strauss Tone Poem, but it does have two clarinet cadnezas and was a great test for the instrument. Was it perfect? Yes, but I was not, but still I am not at all unhappy.
This is a horn that will suit the most demanding professional, especially regarding intonation and the remarkably even quality of tone.
Another Ridenour invention, the Thumb Saddle is a great little rubber boot that goes over the thumbrest and will give you all kinds of relief if you have arthritis or discomfort, especially during rehearsals. I chose not to use it on the performance. Perhaps it is something similar to wearing gloves.but I heartily recommend it. I have not had the pleasure of meeting Tom, but I do think he knows how a good horn is supposed to sound, and armed with this rather amazing acumen, his clarinet is really, pound for pound, the best in the business.
best to all, Sherman