"Ahnenträume" - Quintet with BBCSO Core

Inspired by our nice idea to do monthly theme based challenges, this piece is for June ('22) under the theme of "Quintet".

It's pure BBCSO Core, using only solo instruments:

Flute, Oboe, Horn, Bassoon and Harp

I really can't encourage you enough to try and work with only 5 instruments. This is the first time I've tried it and not only is it an exciting musical challenge, but it's also extremely comfortable to work on. I've used Cubase for this and had only 7 tracks:

Tempo, Signature and the 5 instruments. Using key switches for the few articulations I've used (all legato, major thrills and some extra techniques).

I could focus almost entirely on the composition. And I'm very glad I could, because it was quite challenging enough. I dearly loved the process, though!

Anyway, this is the first time I've approached this kind of composition and any trained composer may squint through most of it.

I'd be thrilled to get some more advice and would love any feedback. 🧐

Thanks in advance!



  • Restrictions have always helped me too. I appreciate the fact you've challenged yourself and are sharing that advice with others.

    This piece feels dynamic and in motion. I think the articulations on the instruments add a lot of character. It starts out very grounded and then begins to transform at the 55sec mark. I think my favorite part is the beginning with the transition to these different scenes.

    I have no education in music theory or composition, but as a listener the very dynamic parts might have more impact and feel more memorable if there was more breathing room from time to time without losing your intent.

    It's a great piece and appreciate you sharing it!

  • Wonderful feedback, ip! THANK YOU!

    It makes perfect sense to me, regarding the breathing room need. I'm still almost a bit anxious with exploring such setups, like running too fast with the head too deeply inside of it. The more relaxing it gets for me, the more I might allow myself to rise above it to a broader overview. And your nudge certainly helps make that happen!

    Thanks again! I'm assuming, it takes the sort of rogue background of ours to more freely share our impressions, hehe. We gotta stick together! 😄👍️

  • very interesting question, these limits that we set ourselves, these constraints that push us to find solutions.

    Your piece conceals all the fantasy and inventiveness that is appreciable by following your initial canvas.

    I particularly like the sliding passage towards the atonal with a perfectly mastered set of timbres!

    Well done again!

  • Thank you very much, Krisp! I've just found your wonderful set and you're very, very inspiring. Combined with this encouraging and kind feedback it makes me even more happy to continue exploring all this.

    You're awesome, really, thank you! 🤗

  • Hi,

    sounds really nice ! Thanks for sharing

  • Londoneye330
    edited July 2022

    This sound amazing!! The use of various articulations are amazing!

    Question: What is the idea behind the name of the piece?

  • Thanks @Londoneye330 uh, totally missed your comment.😀

    I felt a story for this one, which is a bit like a romantic novel, I'm afraid... 😁 ...but it's about a family in the early 20th century, where the mother has visions or dreams she can't quite explain. They show her a world a few generations back, how her great grandparents met and what they had to go through to follow their dreams of making a family in a time so very different, but really only the world around them. Hence "the dreams of ancestors", I suppose.

    Again, thanks and thanks for asking! 🤗

  • What a great idea very inspiring. Also a lovely piece, beautifully executed. The use of different articulations is seamless.

  • THANK YOU, @jamesnic7 , what a nice and uplifting message! Yeah, it really makes me dream of having more solo instruments for BBCSO, but that's what probably keeps PRO on my wishlist, haha. I actually love the player and had a very pleasant time to work the articulations. It feels quite natural and it's easy to get into their groove.

    Thanks again! 🤗