The piece begins with a single note: soft and low. From this lone ember, a slow burn works its way through the first section, building in intensity as it moves the range ever higher. After a brief nod to the beginning, the piece suddenly ignites into the fast and percussive second section. The mood changes in the middle of the second section, momentarily lyrical and flowing, while keeping its driving tempo. The piece finishes with a modified recap of the initial fiery theme.
While “Awakening Fire” is intended to be played as a single, two-section piece, each section can stand on its own. Suitable for recitals and solo and ensemble contests. Originally composed for bass clarinet, the piece should transfer well to Eb contra-alto or possibly Bb contrabass.