Claude Debussy’s timeless masterpiece Clair de Lune finds new life on the marimba in this beautiful yet challenging arrangement.
I wanted to play Clair de Lune on marimba because my dog, Blue, loved the marimba and loved this piece of music. Blue was always there to listen when I practiced marimba, usually sleeping under the instrument, and he would even get upset anytime it needed to be moved out of the house. Blue was the sweetest and most loving dog I’ve ever known, and he brought comfort and joy to everyone he met. The only time Blue needed to be comforted himself was during the occasional thunderstorm, and music was the one thing that could calm him. Piano music was the most effective, and Clair de Lune became the go-to piece anytime thunder could be heard in the distance.
I was surprised to not ﬁnd any existing arrangements of Clair de Lune for solo 5-octave marimba. It is not an easy piece to play on the instrument, and this arrangement quite literally pushes the limits of both the marimba and the performer, at one point requiring simultaneous notes spanning nearly the full length of the instrument. I imagine the difficulty is the reason that more marimba versions do not exist, but it was important to keep this arrangement as true to the piano score as possible in an effort to capture the beauty and emotion of the original. While I hope I accomplished this goal, I’m certain that Blue would love it and that’s all that truly matters to me.