Far Side of the Pasture, Opus 22 by Neal Corwell
“a collection of humorous animal ditties”

Instrumentation: narrator with trombone
Copyright: 1994
Duration: ca. 11 minutes total, 2 to 3 minutes per movement*
Range: D to a-1
Difficulty: III-IV
Publisher: Nicolai Music
Price: $15
Other Info: Was premiered in 1994 during a faculty recital at Shepherd College, in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. Dr. Corwell played trombone for that first performance, and Kathryn Sincell was the narrator.
Recorded by: Neal Corwell, trombone and narration (Out Sitting in His Field CD, Nicolai Music)


The Far Side of the Pasture is a set of “trombone-assisted” humorous poems about some rather atypical barnyard animals. The title is a homage to Gary Larson’s “Far Side” cartoon series, which is famous for its odd take on members of the animal kingdom. Having grown up on a working farm, and having spent twelve years of his adult life working on the same family farm, Neal Corwell felt inspired to draw on his experiences, with a touch of unreality, to create this piece.

The titles of the individual pieces are as follows:

The Swine Flu
A Horse’s Tale
Beware of Bovines
The Mad Hen Two-Step

*For performance one may perform the work in its entirety, or pick and choose individual movements. The trombone soloist is muted for the entire work, and makes use of a wah-wah mute for three of the four pieces. The narrator is expected to read the text following suggested rhythmic patterns, play sand-blocks during the
Mad Hen Two-Step, and is given the option of singing during a brief passage within Beware of Bovines. The clever and sometimes intricate interaction between trombonist and narrator, along with the humorous text, make this crowd-pleaser that is fun for both audience and performers.