Copyright © 2017-19 by Jordan Kuspa

Masque of the

red death

A ballet in three parts, based on the short story by Edgar Allan Poe

Composed in 2016

Duration: 45:00

Instrumentation: Flute/Piccolo, Oboe/English Horn, Clarinet/Bass Clarinet, Bassoon, Horn in F, Trumpet in C, Bass Trombone, Tuba, Percussion (Marimba (5 octave), Chimes, Sizzle Cymbal, Suspended Cymbal, China Cymbal, Large Tam- Tam, Brake Drum, Bass Drum, Snare Drum, Tambourine, Slapstick), Harp, Piano, Violin 1, Violin 2, Viola, Cello, Bass

Part I: Without and Within

1. Overture: In the Ravaged Country

2. Inside Prince Prospero's Abbey
3. Waltz

 

Part II: The Ghastly Apartments

4. Blue Room
5. Purple Room
6. Green Room
7. Orange Room
8. White Room
9. Violet Room
10. The Final Chamber (Black and Scarlet Room)

 

Part III: The Masquerade in Frenzy

11. Bacchanal
12. Appearance of the Shrouded Figure

13. Dominion of the Red Death

Instrumentation

The two outer parts of The Masque of the Red Death make use of the full sinfonietta ensemble.

The middle part is a suite of chamber pieces utilizing subsets of the full ensemble:

Blue Room: Flute, Horn, Violin (1), Piano, Chimes
Purple Room: Clarinet, Trumpet, Harp, Cello
Green Room: Bassoon, Bass Trombone, Violin (2), Bass, Chimes

Orange Room: Oboe, Horn, Tuba, Viola

White Room: Flute, Trumpet, Violin 1, Violin 2, Piano, Chimes

Violet Room: Bassoon, Harp, Viola, Cello

Black and Scarlet Room: English Horn, Bass Clarinet, Bass Trombone, Tuba, Bass, Chimes

In the final section, Dominion of the Red Death, the harpist is asked to play the bass drum. 

The composer has recently arranged Part III for full orchestra, under the title, Dominion of the Red Death.