June Emerson Wind Music
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Printed Edition
Composer:Britten, Benjamin (1913-1976)
Instrumentation:ob. pft.
Publisher Ref:0571505929
The suite for oboe & strings based on these 2 pieces never materialized. They were probably not performed together until 3 years after Britten's death, at the memorial concert for the first oboe soloist of 'The Grasshopper'.

Price: £8.99
Skill Level:C/D
Publisher:Faber Music
ISMN:none specified
In April 1935 Britten wrote to the oboist Sylvia Spencer (1909-1978) telling her that these little pieces were growing into "a large and elaborate suite for oboe & strings" but as nothing more than fragments of three further pieces survive and nothing at all for strings, it seems that the suite existed only in Britten's head.
In the same letter, he suggested that 'The Grasshopper' would cause no problems to the player, but that in 'The Wasp', "the notes don't matter nearly as much as the speed - which must be pretty hectic".
'The Grasshopper' was first performed at the Leith Hill Festival on 2nd May 1935 by Sylvia Spencer and Millicent Silver (piano) but it is not known that the two pieces were performed together until 7th March 1979 which was the date of the memorial concert for Sylvia Spencer at the Royal Northern College of Music. Janet Craxton was the oboe soloist, accompanied on the piano by Margot Wright.

  • The Grasshopper - Allegro leggiero - (3'00)
  • The Wasp - Allegro molto e con fuoco - (2'00)

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