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Music Publishers - Goodmusic, Roberton Publications, Bardic Edition & Leslie Music Supply

01684 773883

Peter Lawson (1951- )
for oboe and piano

Catalogue Number: 95517

ISMN: 9790222252578

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Song of the Musk Orchid image
The Song of the Musk Orchid written in 1982 for David Presly and Reiko Isobe, is the fourth in a projected series of portraits by Peter Lawson, for solo, chamber and orchestral combinations of the forty-eight wild orchids of Great Britain and Ireland.
The Musk Orchid (Herminium monorchis) is a tiny, yellowish-green plant which inhabits short turf on chalk limestone from the Cotswolds in Britain - where it is becoming increasingly rare - eastwards throughout Europe into Asia and Japan. It is likely to be overlooked by all but the curious - even resembling a piece of grass to the casual observer - but on closer inspection, reveals itself as an altogether more attractive and intricate, if diminutive, member of the hugely varied and sophisticated orchid family. Particularly in the evening, it smells strongly - almost beguilingly - of honey, rather than of musk.
The Song of the Musk Orchid begins with a reference to the orchid's downland habitat by alluding to the English folk music of Brigg Fair. There then follows an episode portraying, as it were in close-up, the many-flowered spike of the plant. Here, also, is a hint of its more oriental distribution. We then move even closer into the plant - a cadenza for the oboe. Finally we see the outside world from the point of view of the orchid itself: a calm, serene, dignified and spiritual world - and a very different one from our own.
Duration 10 minutes

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