Botanical Obsessions

solo flute (2000)

1. Milky Bellflower

2. Heliotrope

3. Chaste Tree

Elizabeth Brown, flute

duration: 9.5′


program note

Each of the 3 Botanical Obsessions for solo flute refers to a charismatic plant with which the composer, an avid gardener, was preoccupied. Milky Bellfower (campanula lactiflora) has glorious milky-blue bell-shaped flowers; an old cottage garden favorite, Heliotrope has clusters of tiny purple flowers with a rich vanilla fragrance; and the Chaste Tree (vitex agnus-castus) has lavendar flower spikes and grey-green foliage, both of which give off a spicy scent when brushed. In each movement, the flute uses a language of microtonal trills and progressions to swirl and obsessively repeat a few simple gestures. Botanical Obsessions was commissioned by flutist Stefani Starin. It was premiered by the composer at the National Flute Association Convention in the year 2000. Funding by the Brannen-Cooper Fund was sponsored by the Electronic Music Foundation.