Composer: Schubert, Franz
Publisher: T D Ellis
for solo bassoon
by Franz Schubert (1797-1828)- Austrian composer
Arranged by Daniel Nester. There has always been an aura of mystery and virtuosity surrounding the terrifyingly erotic poem by Goethe. Inspired by a feverish ride he took with his ward, and perhaps by a heated argument with the boy's mother, Goethe tells the tale of how the evil Elf King tries to seduce a boy away from his father, and eventually takes him by force.
It is said that Schubert, upon reading the poem, immediately conceived its musical setting, and composed the piece in one intense sitting. The piece was later arranged for various instruments, perhaps most famously by Franz Liszt for solo piano.
In this arrangement, Daniel Nester has utilized the bassoon's propensity for intense articulation to convey the quintessential hallmark of Schubert's musical setting; the unending triplets representing the galloping horse. The arrangement also utilizes the bassoon's large range to make the narrative voices distinct from one another.