A miniature trombone concerto written in 2013 and commissioned by Clare College, Cambridge. It consists of a Prologue, ten mini-movements (which mostly run together), a trombone cadenza and a coda. In each mini-movement, one of the band acts as the trombone’s duet-partner; hence the title. The subtitles are: Secret Fugue (glittery percussion, trombone clowning); Sarabande (c’bass & trombone in ponderous coupling); Courante (clarinet flighty, trombone teasing); Serenade (trombone amorous, harp glamorous); Rough stuff (punch-up for trombone and trumpet); Remember me? – tragi-comic Dido’s lament (suicidal cello with impatient, mocking trombone); Two-part invention (violin and trombone gymnastics); Sentimental interlude (maidenly viola disgusted by trombone crudity); Flight (fluttery courting pigeons); Canzona (crooning song for trombone & sax). In the Prologue the trombone introduces each of the other instruments; then he moves around the platform, rousing his duet-partners to action by attacking, seducing or teasing them. He returns to centre stage for his closing cadenza and a plink-plonk cadence.
Double act was premiered at West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge on November 21st 2013. The solo trombonist was Michael Buchanan, and the performance was conducted by Patrick Milne. This performance can be heard and seen on YouTube.