Fun and frolic abound in the sylvan imagery conjured up in this piece. While the composer describes for us a bucolic setting in the music, populated by birds, insects, and other animals large and small, as players we must endeavor to create that vision in the minds of the audience. For example, a significant change of tempo at the Più mosso (rehearsal letter C) might introduce new characters or a new scene. The composer’s instructions are deliberately sparse in order to encourage playing groups to invent their own interpretations.
On a side note, as an educator I am particularly pleased with the composer’s use of the key of A major, with its 3 sharps, which I advocate should be comfortably under the fingers of all recorder players.
Gary Betts hails from a family of singers and instrumentalists, so a love of music comes naturally to him. He studied vocal and instrumental music at The University of Delaware and West Chester University in Pennsylvania, earning Bachelor and Master of Music Degrees. He taught music to children ages three to eighteen in public and private schools in Delaware and Florida. Upon retirement in 2014, he joined the Sarasota Chapter of ARS, where he plays recorders in the Sarasota Earlye Musick Consort and has begun to lead Chapter meetings.
– Glen Shannon, Editor
Composer’s note: The beauty of the woodlands lies in a perfect juxtaposition of the calming stability of trees and a flurry of animal activity. “Woodland Whimsy” is a depiction of gently swaying trees in and around which bears, birds, and butterflies perform nature’s ballet.