Five short pieces for oboe and piano in pastoral style, freely based on poems unified by water imagery
- 9 minutes
Revised version of Op.3 for oboe with piano accompaniment
- Dedham Vale
- The Royal Festival Hall
- Newlands Beck
This was transcribed in 2008 from Moments, a set of five songs (1977) to poems by John Barber, which celebrate significant moments (and places in England and France) at the start of a relationship.
The transcription embellishes the vocal lines and exploits the pastoral character of the oboe, which is appropriate to the poems which are largely outdoor in character and unified by water imagery.
The title of this set of oboe pieces is taken from Charlieu, the final song: We enter the monastery in the quiet of the evening.
The five pieces are constructed in the form of an arch with the climactic central movement initially evoking the atmosphere of a pseudo-Romantic orchestral concert.
The piano accompaniment uses arpeggiated figures to suggest flowing water and the set is unified further with a persistent motif of a falling fifth within the overall interval of a minor sixth. This first occurs in the oboist's second phrase of 'Dedham Vale', but recurs in each song, primarily in the accompaniment and predominantly in the bravura piano writing immediately before the soloist's ending in the central piece.