Programme Notes

Benjamin Tassie - Clutch

Clutch (2016) - Benjamin Tassie (b. 1987)
for alto flute and electronics

Clutch is an energetic, irreverent piece for solo alto flute. The work is study-like, exploring the instrument’s range, playing styles, and some extended techniques (pitch bends and quarter tones). Baroque ornaments (trills, mordants) are set against a background of electro-pop electronics, with an energy that builds, disintegrates (in a middle section in which the metre shifts) and builds again. The title, Clutch, is a reference to the expression ‘clutching my pearls’, meaning ‘a moment in time that forces one to clasp their hand to their chest, out of fear or shock, as if trying to protect an imaginary pearl necklace’ (

Clutch was written for Carla Rees, who gave the premiere at rarescale’s summer school at Harlaxton Manor, Lincolnshire on 5 August 2016

Duration: 4’00 approx

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