Grieg wrote the incidental music for Ibsen's play 'Peer Gynt'. The play tells the story of a Norwegian mountain lad - Peer Gynt - who has great potential as an artist but who is constantly at war with his physical desires. Like all good stories he has a number of trials and adventures: he meets a young woman and they fall in love; he helps a bride escape from her wedding; he has a terrified escape from some mountain trolls; he comforts his mother on her deathbed; he becomes a successful businessman, loses it all; goes to Africa and pretends to be an Arab prophet, and winds up in a lunatic asylum. Finally, he returns home to confront a creature called the Shadow, who has always been watching him and trying to teach him what it is to be human. It is the Shadow who forces Peer to consider returning to the woman he fell in love with so much earlier in the story, and pursue a career as an artist. 'The Death of Åse' is a tender lament for strings (or saxophones!!), based on an old Norwegian melody, and accompanies the death of Peer Gynt's aged mother.
This arrangement was created in October 2006, specifically for Plural Sax's Kimbolton concert where we added one player at a time until all 12 players were on stage.
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This music is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Licence.