Polin, Claire (1926-1995) Website

Shirildang, Trans-Ural Suite for Piano
11'40" $ 11.00 #040077 AP-115

Inspired by Polin's visits to Soviet Georgia and Armenia and her reading of Beliaev's Central Asian Music, Shirildang was commissioned by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts as well as the Russian pianist, Viktor Friedman who has performed the piece throughout Europe. There are four short movements that incorporate an Uzbekian march and wedding song along with Khazak, Turkomenian, Tadjik and Khirghiz tunes.

Phantasmagoria for piano four hands
6' $8.00 #040086 AP-203

Phantasmagoria calls for the placement of three or four small metal bells on the central strings of the piano to produce a harpsichord-like twang. The composer indicates that this special effect may be omitted, but that a certain quality of mystery in the piece will be lost thereby.

score sample (pdf)

Freltic Sonata for Violin and Piano
(performed from score) 16'15" $12.00 #040095 AP-705

"Freltic" is an elision of the words French and Celtic, referring to materials used in the outer movements. The first movement, Virelai-tions, begins with an Ojibway Indian folk tune treated canonically at first and later used as a chaconne line for five variations on Machaut's melody, Douce Dame. The second movement, Bariolage, is a virtuosic display. Breiz, the third movement, is based on a Breton rhythmic pattern with fluctuating major-minor colors and an exciting ending. The piece is performed from score.

score sample (pdf)


A student of many famous composers of her time including Vincent Persichetti, Lukas Foss, Roger Sessions, and Peter Mennin, Claire Polin earned degrees in music from the Philadelphia Conservatory and studied at Juilliard and at Tanglewood. A flutist as well as a composer, she collaborated with her former flute teacher, William Kincaid, on a five volume flute method.

She was on the faculty at Rutgers University where she taught Biblical music, music of ancient Wales and of Russia as well as composition. In addition she published books on music of the Near East and on a medieval Welsh tablature manuscript. She directed international university exchange concerts, including three exchanges with the Soviet Union beginning in 1982.

Recent performances of her works include the premiere of her unpublished Variations for Flute along with a presentation of her life and works in collaboration with flutist William Kincaid by the New York Flute Club's 2019 Flute Fair, and a performance of her Sonata #1 for Flute by Musicians of Lenox Hill. A full feature article is scheduled to appear in an upcoming issue of Flute Talk. Her four string quartets are scheduled for publication in 2019.

Sisra Publications (the name Arsis Press uses for ASCAP composers) has published her Shirildang, Trans-Ural Suite for Piano, Phantasmagoria for piano four-hands, and Freltic Sonata for Violin and Piano.


Email us

We've gathered some of our favorite quotes here:
Quotes by Women of Note
Links to Our Favorite Sites