Home   >   Departments   >   Sheet Music   >   Strings   >   Double Bass Solo   >   SYRINX Book 3


Cover photograph
See larger image
Price £12.50

2018 marks the centenary of the death of the great French composer Claude Debussy (1862-1918) and the 'Syrinx Project' is an international initiative inviting composers to write a new work for unaccompanied double bass, lasting around three minutes, and inspired in some way by Debussy's masterpiece Syrinx for solo flute. Inspired and directed by David Heyes, the ‘Syrinx Project’ has brought together 22 composers from across the world with the aim of creating an exciting year-long programme of commissions, performances and recordings.
All the pieces in the ‘Syrinx Project’ will be published by Recital Music, alongside a transcription of Debussy’s original Syrinx, in a series of innovative and evocative books which deserve to find a permanent place in the concert repertoire for unaccompanied double bass.

Michael Montgomery (USA)
Syrinx and Pan - A Conversation between Innocence and Malevolence
"This short piece for unaccompanied double bass was written in response to an appeal for compositions for the “The Syrinx Project” organized by bassist and composer David Heyes, who writes, “2018 is the centenary of the death of the French composer Claude Debussy (1862-1918) and I thought it would be great to ask composers to write a piece for unaccompanied double bass, in any style or idiom, but influenced in some way by the piece, and lasting no more than three minutes”.

Feeling less than confident with the idea of mimicking Debussy’s genius musically, I decided to instead take up the story - Syrinx’s encounter with Pan. I resolved to treat it as a metaphor for the corruption malevolence brings to innocence, and so the form the composition takes is one of a conversation between the two qualities. The dialogue of Syrinx (innocence) is presented almost exclusively with the notes of the D pentatonic scale, while the contentious challenges of Pan punctuate her childlike discourse with notes well outside her simple tonal pallet. Throughout the exchange between the two Syrinx, though seeming at times uncertain, stands her ground and in the end emerges confident, her innocence preserved. Offered in appreciation for all David Heyes has done for the world of us bassists." [Michael Montgomery]

Syrinx and Pan was premiered on 22 April 2018 at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (Bentonville, Arkansas, USA) by Maggie Estrada (double bass)

Adam Booker (USA)
Satie’s Satire for Satyrs
"Written for the Syrinx Project in celebration of the centennial of Claude Debussy, Satie’s Satire for Satyrs is a nod to the special relationship between Claude Debussy and Eric Satie. The first section evokes the playful dance of Pan, with a mocking demeanour, utilizing repetitive rhythmic and formal concepts from the Neoclassical movement. The middle section is played slower, with hints of Debussy’s chromaticism and the symmetrical harmonic idiom of Impressionism. Satie’s Satire for Satyrs ends with a reprise of the first section, much as the piece, Syrinx, which inspired this project." [Adam Booker]

John Kinsella (Republic of Ireland)
"When I first heard of "Syrinx" I was working on drafts of a solo oboe theme for an orchestral piece. The shape I had in my head was a long expressive note to be concluded by some type of fast figuration and that solo was to be repeated and developed. When I then looked at Syrinx I noted that the first two beats were a very embryonic echo of this general shape (not unusual) so I just let the two work away in my head until I ended up with Syrinx - 2018. I still have not found the final version of my oboe theme!!" [John Kinsella]

Syrinx-2018 was premiered at Sirius Arts Centre, Cobh (Republic of Ireland) on Sunday 11 March 2018 by David Whitla (double bass)

Edmund Joliffe (UK)
Pan’s Dance (Attempting to seduce Syrinx)
"Pan’s Dance (attempting to seduce Syrinx) refers to the moment when Pan met Syrinx after returning from a hunt. Syrinx was not interested in him and ran away. Debussy’s piece uses the flute to great effect in his depiction of Syrinx as a beautiful nymph-like creature. I on the other hand have gone to the polar opposite and used the double-bass to depict Pan as ungainly and unworthy of her. He tries to woo her with his dancing but ultimately fails. The double-bass, although not ungainly in itself, is very suitable for this purpose. The music should be played with a sense of swagger, becoming more elaborate as the piece unfolds and Pan becomes increasingly desperate."


  • 1. Claude Debussy - Syrinx (arr. David Heyes)
  • 2. Michael Montgomery - Syrinx and Pan
  • 3. Adam Booker - Satie's Satire for Satyrs
  • 4. John Kinsella - SYRINX-2018
  • 5. Edmund Joliffe - Pan's Dance

Samples available

Adobe PDF File

Get Adobe Reader

Cat No. RM998
Supplier Code RM998
Price £12.50
ComposersJames D'Angelo
Claude Debussy
Edmund Jolliffe
John Kinsella
Michael Montgomery
CategoryDouble Bass Solo
PublisherRecital Music
Difficulty level7 - 8, Advanced
ISMN 979-0-57045-998-8
EAN-13 9790570459988
Weight 163 grams
Published 22nd February 2019
Availability 7 in stock
See also...
RM986  SYRINX Book 1
RM990  A Turetzky Tribute Book 1
RM1029  A Turetzky Tribute Book 2